What is metastatic cervical cancer actress Dolly Sohi suffered from? | Health - Hindustan Times
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What is metastatic cervical cancer actress Dolly Sohi suffered from?

By, New Delhi
Mar 09, 2024 05:39 PM IST

Dolly Sohi passed away due to cervical cancer. Metastatic cervical cancer is an advanced stage of the disease and can spread beyond cervix to other organs.

Actor Dolly Sohi, 47, who starred in TV shows like Bhabhi, Kumkum Bhagya and Parineeti passed away on Friday morning at a hospital in Navi Mumbai. She was suffering from cervical cancer which had spread to her lungs. She was diagnosed around six months ago and was undergoing treatment for the disease. Tragically, her younger sister Amandeep Sohi, also an actor, succumbed to jaundice just a day back. (Also read | Cervical Cancer Awareness Month: 8 benefits of HPV vaccine beyond cervical cancer prevention)

Actress Dolly Sohi succumbed to cervical cancer. Metastatic cervical cancer is an advanced stage of the disease and can spread beyond cervix to other tissues or organs.
Actress Dolly Sohi succumbed to cervical cancer. Metastatic cervical cancer is an advanced stage of the disease and can spread beyond cervix to other tissues or organs.

Cervical cancer is a growth of cells that starts in the cervix, the lower part of the uterus that connects to the vagina. Various HPV (human papillomavirus) strains that are contracted through sexual contact cause cervical cancer. When not treated on time, it can spread to other organs or metastasize.

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"Cervical cancer, a cancer of the lower part of the uterus which is called the cervix is the leading cause of death among women in our country. Though breast cancer has currently surpassed as the biggest cause of female mortality in our country, however, cervical cancer still leads the statistics," says Dr Rahul Manchanda, Hon. Senior Consultant (Endoscopic Gynaecology), PSRI Hospital, New Delhi.

What is metastatic cancer?

"Metastatic cervical cancer is an advanced stage of the disease and can spread beyond cervix to other tissues or organs. It can affect lungs, bones, liver etc. Survival rates are low when the cancer has spread to other organs but can be managed with chemotherapy and radiotherapy. Metastatic cervical cancer originates in the cervix but has spread to other parts of the body, typically through the lymphatic system or bloodstream. Common sites of metastasis also include the lungs, liver, bones, and distant lymph nodes," says Dr Roli Banthia, Consultant -Obstetrics and Gynaecology, Yatharth Hospital, Noida Extension.

"Metastatic cervical cancer refers to cancer that has spread beyond the cervix. It can spread to organs which are close to the cervix like vagina, or urinary bladder or the intestines. The cancer can even metastasize to the lungs, brain and bones. The risk of mortality is higher when the cancer has spread to other organs. Treatment options for metastatic cervical cancer involve chemotherapy and radiotherapy, instead of surgery based on the specific type of cancer," says Dr Manchanda.

Low survival rates

"Survival rates for metastatic cervical cancer are lower as compared to early-stage cancer. While the 5 years survival rate for early-stage cervical cancer is almost 90%, for metastatic cancer, it’s an abysmal 20% or even less highlighting the increased risk of death. That's why it’s important to take cognizance of this fact and prioritize regular pap smear testing and vaccination for our young girls as cervical vaccination can prevent cervical cancer in over 95 percent of cases," adds Dr Manchanda.

Symptoms of metastatic cancer

"In metastatic cervical cancer, patients may experience a variety of symptoms, foremost symptoms include foul smelling discharge and fleshy mass from vagina. Additionally, general symptoms such as weight loss, fatigue, and loss of appetite may be present," says Dr Banthia.

Treatment for metastatic cancer

Treatment for metastatic cervical cancer aims to control the spread of the disease, alleviate symptoms, and improve quality of life.

While metastatic cancer is generally considered incurable, various treatment options are available to help manage the condition. These may include chemotherapy, radiation therapy, targeted therapy, immunotherapy, and palliative care, says Dr Banthia.

  • Chemotherapy, often in combination with targeted therapy or immunotherapy, is commonly used to shrink tumours and slow the progression of the disease.
  • Radiation therapy may be employed to alleviate symptoms such as pain or bleeding, particularly if the cancer has spread to the bones or is causing compression of nearby structures.
  • Immunotherapy drugs, which help the body's immune system recognise and attack cancer cells, have shown promise in certain cases of metastatic cervical cancer.
  • Further, palliative care plays a crucial role in managing symptoms and improving quality of life for patients with metastatic cervical cancer, focusing on pain management, psychological support, and assistance with daily activities.

It is important to note that treatment decisions are typically individualised based on factors such as the extent of metastasis, overall health status, and patient preferences.

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