Pruritus itch is sometimes not only a signal of a skin disease, stagnation of bile or allergies, but also a paraneoplastic sign of an oncological disease. When cancer is found, itching may be in response to radiation therapy or the patient taking anticancer drugs. But in any case, it is important symptomatic treatment in order to improve the condition of the patient.
Itching of the skin of the body can provoke a constant desire to comb the skin, discomfort. As a rule, at first, it appears in the place of nerves under the skin in the layer of the epidermis, where their terminations are located. After that, through the innervation of nerve fibers, the signals of the impulses are transmitted to the cerebral cortex. The mechanism of this process can be explained by the functioning of the autonomic nervous system.
Sometimes itchy skin can be a sign of skin or systemic disease. It also provokes dry skin, manifested at certain times of the year.
Why exactly this skin problem appears is not yet definitively clarified. So, by and large, they depend on the type and type of neoplasm, the degree of poor quality, neglect of pathology.
Such an itch is a complex process that has arisen due to changes in the skin or in the whole body. It appears due to various biologically active substances, bile acids, mediators (cytokines, serotonin, histamine), toxic substances that were produced during the formation of a cancerous tumor.
Causes of Itching
The oncology classifies such factors as predisposing itching:
- Provoked directly by the tumor.
- Arising as a result of taking biomodulators or chemotherapy.
- Due to exposure.
If itching occurs locally, while it is of particular intensity, then there may be any dermatosis of the skin. Among these diseases are found:
- Fungal infections of the skin.
- Atopic dermatitis.
This group also includes itching in the anus zone, and it can manifest itself if non-compliance with simple hygiene, hemorrhoids, diabetes, proctitis, helminthic invasions, and anal fissures. If the problem manifests itself in the genital area, then papillomavirus infection, diabetes mellitus, estrogen deficiency, etc. may develop.
Generalized pruritus tends to appear without any special skin modifications (erosion, scratching).
Older people also often suffer from this pathology. And often it occurs when the age changes dry skin: over time, the skin becomes thinner and the amount of moisture decreases.
By this term, oncology means all sorts of diseases that manifest themselves not exactly from the effect of the progression of a substandard formation, but from its likely effect on the metabolic process in the body. Among such diseases may be skin diseases that are accompanied by itching.
This symptom can occur without pronounced changes in the skin, such as, for example, in 1/3 of patients. In turn, in the predominant part of the patients, there are changes in the skin and traces of scratching in the area of former injuries. What is different – itching for oncology can occur spontaneously. His intensity may vary, however, more often he is more or less moderate. At night, he becomes stronger.
Localization of itching in oncology of various organs
As a rule, itching for cancer can be local, associated with paraneoplastic rashes, generalized, occurring without any changes in the skin.
In most cases of rash and intense discomfort arising on their background, which is not treated, do not have a direct relationship to the location of oncology. In this case, the collected clinical experience speaks of a certain dependence:
- New growth in the uterus causes itching in the genital area.
- Tumors in the intestine are the result of itching of the perianal zone.
- Itching in the perineum and scrotum will occur in prostate cancer.
- Brain cancer can occur with itching in the area of the nostrils.
It is important to correctly interpret the factor of the development of generalized itching, during which there are no skin changes. Most often it occurs with squamous forms of cancer and adenocarcinomas.
Generalized itching of the skin in lymphogranulomatosis as the main symptom occurs infrequently (up to 30% of cases) and its difference is that it precedes the ailment itself. Hodgkin’s disease suggests its manifestation on the legs, and over time it is higher and already all over the body. Patients may experience sweating (especially at night), a burning sensation.
It is noted that patients with burning pain in the legs, on the chest, upper back, and in the folds of the hands experience time with a cranium and adenocarcinoma. In some cases, there are flash attacks, sweating, fever, related to the release of hormones produced by intestinal tumors into the bloodstream.
With cancer of the liver, cholestatic itching may occur. Oncology with bone metastases or skin causes painful itching in damaged areas.
It is noted that this symptom disappears at the end of surgery and may appear again with an exacerbation of the tumor.
Skin itching treatment
Complete relief from pruritus is possible only after oncology treatment. However, symptomatic treatment can be given during cancer therapy. Its primary task is to preserve the integrity of the skin in order to further prevent discomfort or infection of the skin.
Patient with this disease is important to be in a room with acceptable humidity. Due to diarrhea, sweating, vomiting, you need to compensate for the loss of fluid. Clothing for such a patient should be free, natural (without synthetic composition and wool) so that the skin is not irritated. Washing powder should be well rinsed out when washing.