Preventing Myelodysplastic syndrome is not impossible.
Medical researchers and clinicians from around the world are continuously conducting research studies about Myelodysplastic syndrome, or MDS, expanding their efforts to address this disease effectively. With the innovations and breakthroughs in technology, it is predicted that a couple of years from now, all these efforts will pay off.
Though there are already a number of causes, diagnosis and treatments of MDS established in the medical field today, researchers are struggling to shift their focus to the prevention of the disease as there are scarcely few findings on how MDS could be avoided.
Reducing the risks to developing MDS is a challenge for everyone in the healthcare field since the exact cause is still unidentified and a lot of risk factors are also beyond medical control. However, scientists are putting their greatest efforts into understanding the changes in a person’s DNA that take place, causing a normal healthy cell to develop into a myelodysplastic affected cell. In addition, scientists are currently learning what the bone marrow stromal cells have to do in the development and progression of MDS cells. These bone marrow stromal cells are specific type of cells that can be found in one’s bone marrow, but do not form into blood cells. They support and nourish other new blood forming cells.
According to most research, though these cells are not known to be cancerous, they play a crucial role in the process of MDS cell development and progression. Through a number of research studies, experts are now beginning to figure out how the changes in cell development are linked to industrial chemical exposure of the patient’s mother or the patient himself. The level of exposure to industrial chemicals could be the single external factor that can be modified to reduce the risk of having MDS. The chemicals that increase the likelihood of developing myelodysplastic-infected cells are petrochemicals, rubber, and benzene.
Because total recall of these toxins in the market is impossible to impose, experts suggest that people who are exposed to these particular industrial chemicals need to increase their awareness on MDS and follow special defensive measures in order to protect themselves from these harmful chemicals. Every factory or industry using these chemicals has specific set of guidelines on how to minimize their exposure to these toxins. One technique is by wearing PPE or Personal Protective Equipment such as goggles, helmets, appropriate clothing, etc.
There is also a close definitive link between smoking and the development of MDS. People who have been smoking tobacco for the last twenty to thirty years of their life have increased chances of developing the disease. Tobacco is known to have over 4,000 different chemicals like benzene and nicotine that are harmful substances to human’s health. As a result, campaigns to stop smoking are strongly mobilized in order to make the detrimental effects of smoking, such as MDS, be made known to the public.
Doctors have also identified certain medical treatments like chemotherapy, as well as radiation therapy, to contribute to the development of myelodysplastic affected cells. Though the association is not strongly established and the possibility is very insignificant when compared to other risk factors, chemotherapy can influence the development and progression of MDS. So, if you have been receiving these forms of treatments, you should see your medical provider often and have a checkup regularly.
There are other associated modifiable and non-modifiable risk factors to having MDS. However, most research studies are focused on the risk factors that can still be prevented or avoided.