Alcohol Abuse and Esophageal Cancer

Esophageal CancerAlcohol abuse has become prison walls to many people, needless to mention economies are crippled because of this societal vice that has made many people incapable of even fending for themselves. Apart from the whole known fight with alcohol addiction and its related consequences, alcohol abuse has also been identified by researchers as a cause of different cancers. Unfortunately alcoholism is not very easy to quit especially without professional help. Many people who try to stop alcoholism have to give in to the cravings for alcohol. Some may also be pulled back into alcoholism due to the withdrawal symptoms that may be hard to deal with. However hard dealing with alcohol addiction can be, there are numerous ways that medics can use to help an addict break the chain of addiction and help him reduce his chances of falling victim to certain cancers. One of the most important factors that will determine whether the addict will succeed in the fight against addiction is the willingness and commitment of the addict to put up with every advice of the doctors. If you are abusing alcohol and you haven’t seen the need to quit it, I guess you should since it has been linked to many different cancers. One of the cancers that alcohol abuse has been linked to is the esophageal cancer. You may not know much about it but it’s good to note that just like any other type of cancer, esophageal cancer is not lenient at all and so you should carve your path and walk away from this disease.

In this article we will look at how alcohol causes these two main types of esophageal cancers; esophageal squamous cell carcinoma (ESCC) and esophageal adenocarcinoma (EA). In the past it has been known that tobacco smoking is a leading cause of different types of cancers including esophageal cancer but recently research study reports have also indicated that excessive alcohol consumption increase the risk of esophageal squamous cell carcinoma.

Today, esophageal cancer (EC) is the 8th most common incident cancer in the world and, because of its high fatality rate, ranks 6th among all cancers in mortality. It is not surprising, therefore, that the etiology of EC has been investigated for over a century. Based on clinical observations, Craver in his Clinical study of etiology of gastric and esophageal carcinoma in 1932 and Watson in 1939 list excessive use of alcohol and tobacco, low socioeconomic status, poor oral health, and consumption of hot drinks as risk factors for EC. These two scientists even cited past research papers on EC etiology published to back up their findings. In particular Craver cites a 1920 article from Argentina that suggests maté drinking as a risk factor for EC.

Alcohol consumption has long been known to be a major cause of esophageal cancer in most areas of the world just like tobacco smoking which is known by many people as a huge cancer risk. Classic ecologic and case-control studies by Tuyns and others in the 1970s and 1980s in his study Cancer of the esophagus: further evidence of the relation to drinking habits in France, established alcohol as a strong cause of esophageal cancer in many countries, and showed that alcohol drinking and tobacco smoking interact to increase esophageal cancer risk in a multiplicative manner. IARC has classified alcohol drinking as a known cause of esophageal cancer.

Generally, it has been found that excessive alcohol consumption is a cause of esophageal cancer however alcohol abuse increases the risk of esophageal squamous cell carcinoma than it does with esophageal adenocarcinoma (EA), but these are just different sides of the same coin-esophageal cancer. When used in excessive amounts (3 or more drinks per day), alcohol has almost universally been associated with an elevated risk of esophageal squamous cell carcinoma; it typically increases risk by 3–5 fold. In contrast, there is little evidence for an association between alcohol drinking and esophageal adenocarcinoma. However, the majority of the case-control and cohort studies that have investigated this association have found no overall relationship between alcohol consumption and esophageal adenocarcinoma, or have found relatively weak associations between alcohol and esophageal adenocarcinoma.

Nevertheless there has been some sort of controversy on this issue as some researchers have opined that some studies have suggested that only certain types of alcohol may be have effects on esophageal adenocarcinoma. for instance in this study; Obesity, alcohol, and tobacco as risk factors for cancers of the esophagus and gastric cardia: adenocarcinoma versus squamous cell carcinoma, done by Vaughan TL, Davis S, Kristal A, Thomas DB in 1995, the reports suggests that drinking wine may reduce risk. However no other study has come up to support these findings.

Esophageal CancerIn the past the link between alcohol and cancer was not easy to establish since alcohol itself does not bind DNA, is not mutagenic, and does not cause cancer in animals but there are mechanisms that have been known that has since helped to establish the link between alcohol abuse and increased risk of certain cancers. One of these mechanisms is that it is converted to acetaldehyde which is harmful as it causes DNA alteration leading to gene mutation which escalates risks to cancer. Alcohol is also a solvent to other mutagens and also causes nutritional deficiency.

Drug addiction is a vice that should be fought by all means that is why we at AWAREmed Health and Wellness Resource Center are committed to availing help to addicts and offering them a place to call home. We offer NER Treatment and Amino acid therapy that are the most effective approaches to addiction treatment and recovery. You call on Dr. Dalal Akoury (MD) today and begin your journey to victory against addiction.

Alcohol Abuse and Esophageal Cancer