Here is a short explanation. We have tried to make it as clear as possible.We hope it makes sense.Your body is made up of billions of cells. New cells are made to help us grow or to repair worn out cells. Cells carry on dividing throughout our lives to produce new healthy cells.
Cancer occurs when normal cells start to divide up quickly and too many are produced. These cancer cells form a lump.This lump is called a tumour. As you may be beginning to see there are many types of cancer and your doctor will explain to you about your type of cancer. The main types of cancer which affect teenagers are either solid tumours, that affect an organ or bone or cancers of the blood.
Names of Some Blood Cancers:
Acute Lymphoblastic Leukaemia (ALL)
Chronic Lymphocytic Leukaemia (CLL)
Acute Myeloblastic Leukaemia (AML)
Chronic Myeloblastic Leukaemia (CML)
Names of Some Common Tumours:
Brain Tumour - There are many different types of Tumours, e.g. astrocytoma.
Germ Cell Cancer - A tumour of the testes or ovary.
Neuroblastoma - A cancer of the nervous system.
Osteosarcoma - Cancer of the bone.
Ewinga - Sarcoma - A specific type of bone cancer.
Retinoblastoma - Cancer of the eye.
Rhabdomysarcoma - Cancer of the muscle.
Wilmas Tumour - Cancer of the kidney.
Hodgkin Lymphoma and Non Hodgkin Lymphoma - Cancer of the lymphatic system.
Cancer can be treated in a variety of ways, each dependent on which type of cancer it is and how far it has progressed. Every patient has their own treatment plan or protocol made out for them by their doctor.
The different types of treatment and their possible side effects:
Most people suffer some side effects like hairloss, tiredness and sickness.The symptoms go away when your treatment is finished.You will get sicker before you get better, but in the long run it is worth it. Do not think that your treatment is not working just because you suffer from one or all of the side effects. People react differently. Some people will be taken into hospital for their treatment, while others will be treated as outpatients.This will depend on the severity of the treatment and how far the cancer has progressed.
This is all explained in more detail in CanTeens Book Whats Going On?
If you are under 16 years of age your parents / guardian may be entitled to Domiciliary or Carers Allowance. Please ask you social worker for information about this.
If you are over 16 years old and have had cancer or are newly diagnosed you may be entitled to Disability Allowance.
This is a long-term payment for those aged 16-65 with a disability (expected to last at least one year) who satisfy both a means and a habitual residency test. Your means and that of your spouse/partner are taken into account but your parent's means are not considered.
Two personal rates are paid to a couple where each is eligible for the allowance.If you become a long stay patient in hospital or residential care you retain your payment.
You are entitled to a Free Travel Pass and may qualify for a Companion Free Travel Pass if you are unfit to travel alone. You can earn a 120 Euro from rehabilitative type work without it affecting your Disability Allowance. Before you start work you must get approval from the Department of Social and Family Affairs.
Application forms (DA 1) are available from your local Social Welfare Office or from the Disability Allowance Section of the Department of Social and Family Affairs and you will need to get your doctor to sign the application form.
Invalidity Pension, Disability Allowance, Disablement Benefit
Social Welfare Services Office,
Tel: (01) 704 3000, or (043) 45211
You may be entitled to a Medical card also while on treatment - your social worker should be able to tell you more about this!
Further information on benefits is available in "Entitlements for people with disabilities", published by Comhairle and available from your local Citizens Information Centre.