5 Silent Killer Diseases You Should Know

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Silent Killer Diseases

Silent killers are those diseases that show no to little initial symptoms. The symptoms are so subtle that they go unnoticed, while the disease does irreversible damage on the inside. Take the example of high blood pressure, which is a common disease, and often considered too normal to be lethal. However, diseases like blood pressure are as serious as diabetes and even cancer. 

Following is a list of the 5 silent killer diseases you should know about. 

1- Cancer

Cancer is one of the most lethal silent killer diseases because it can go unnoticed for years, by which time it is often too late for the patient to recover.    

Cancer is formed when the normal cell cycle is disrupted due to a few cells that have gone bad, which leads to an uncontrollable cell division. The mass that then forms is called a tumor. Cancer can affect any part of the human body, and the types of cancers are usually named after the body part they affect. 

  • Mesothelioma: It is a deadly and rare cancer that is caused by the inhalation of asbestos fibers, a toxic but naturally occurring silicate mineral. It forms in the lining of organs like the heart, lungs, abdomen and testes. There is no cure for mesothelioma and the survival rate is low. 

However, various treatment options on sites like mesotheliomahope.com can help prolong your life. There are various other resources on the site, apart from treatment plans, that can help you cope with terminal cancer. 

  • Prostate Cancer: It affects the small walnut-shaped prostate gland which produces the seminal fluid in males. Prostate cancer may show no signs in the early stages. However, if the cancer is in the advanced stage, it may cause symptoms like weight loss, blood in the urine or semen, erectile dysfunction and trouble urinating. 
  • Pancreatic Cancer: As the name suggests, the cancer of the pancreas affects the pancreatic tissues – an enzyme producing organ that lies behind the lower stomach and helps in digestion and managing the blood sugar level. Pancreatic cancer is difficult to diagnose partly because it shows no visible symptoms and because the signs of the disease resemble those of some other illnesses. 

2- Cerebrovascular Disease

Cerebrovascular disease affects the blood flow to the brain and can, under worst-case scenarios, lead to the blockage of blood to the brain. The brain doesn’t get important nutrients and oxygen without the blood flow, which can lead to the brain cells dying. It is the primary cause of a brain stroke. 

An ischemic attack is less severe where the blockage of the blood flow lasts for less than 24 hours. The blood flow conditions that cause this disease include narrowing of the vessels (stenosis), artery blockage (embolism), clot formation (thrombosis), and blood vessel rupture (hemorrhage). Cerebrovascular disease can cause long-term disability, brain damage, or even death. 

3- Cardiomyopathy 

Cardiomyopathy is a disease that weakens the muscles of the heart, causing the heart to pump less blood to the other parts of the body. Usually, cardiomyopathy is an inherited disease, but it can also be caused due to an infection. Dilated, restrictive and hypertonic cardiomyopathy are the main types of the disease and every one of them can lead to heart failure.   

4- Heart Disease

Heart disease is a condition of the heart and the blood vessels caused by high cholesterol levels, smoking, high blood pressure, unhealthy diet and obesity. Some common heart diseases include:

  • Atherosclerosis: It is a thickening of the arteries due to plaque buildup in the inner linings of the arteries. The plaque is formed of fat, calcium deposits, cell debris and cholesterol. Heart stroke can occur if the plaque breaks off and a clot forms in place of the plaque. 
  • Coronary Heart Disease: Also called ischemic heart disease, it causes blocking and narrowing of the coronary artery. It is the primary cause of angina as well as heart attack. 
  • Peripheral Arterial Disease: It occurs when the arteries that supply blood from the heart to the lower extremities (legs) become narrowed or blocked due to plaque buildup. 

5- Diabetes 

Type 2 diabetes is a disease in which the body’s blood sugar (glucose) regulation gets disturbed leading to the sugar levels shooting up. The symptoms are unnoticeable until the sugar level has reached 250 – 300 mg/Dl. With a high blood sugar level, the patient may experience weight loss, frequent urination, excessive thirst, fatigue, and constant hunger. 

Conclusion 

Diseases that show no to little symptoms initially are known as silent killers. They get noticed only when it is too late. It makes it necessary for us to study up on these diseases and take necessary preventive measures to safeguard ourselves and our loved ones from these silent killers.