WHAT IS CANCER? WHAT CAUSES CANCER?
Cancer is a class of diseases characterized
by out-of-control cell growth. There are over
100 different types of cancer, and each is
classified by the type of cell that is initially
Cancer is ultimately the result of cells that
uncontrollably grow and do not die. Normal
cells in the body follow an orderly path of
growth, division, and death. Programmed
cell death is called apoptosis, and when this
process breaks down, cancer begins to
form. Unlike regular cells, cancer cells do
not experience programmatic death and
instead continue to grow and divide. This
leads to a mass of abnormal cells that
grows out of control.
SIGNS & SYMPTOMS OF CANCER
Cancer is a group of diseases that can cause
almost any sign or symptom. The signs and
symptoms will depend on where the cancer is,
how big it is, and how much it affects the organs
or tissues. If a cancer has spread
(metastasized), signs or symptoms may appear
in different parts of the body.
As cancer grows, it can begin to push on nearby
organs, blood vessels, and nerves. This
pressure causes some of the signs and
symptoms of cancer. If the cancer is in a critical
area, such as certain parts of the brain, even the
smallest tumor can cause symptoms.
But sometimes cancer starts in places where it
will not cause any signs or symptoms until it
has grown quite large.
WHAT IS A PREVENTABLE CANCER?
Research suggests that only five
percent of cancers are hereditary.
That means the non-inherited
causes of cancer — the lifestyle
choices we make, the foods we
eat, and our physical activity
levels — have a direct impact on
our overall cancer risk.
The American Cancer Society
reports that half of all men and
one-third of all women will
develop cancer in their lifetimes.
Do what you can to avoid
becoming a part of these
CANCER TYPES DATA
Estimated New Cases
Prevent Cancer Foundation
Gastrointestinal Cancers Symposium
National Cancer Institute