Cancer is a disease that occurs when cells in the body grow out of control and begin to spread into other tissues and organs. Cancer can be caused by many different things, including some types of infections, radiation, and some drugs. The most common treatments for cancer include chemotherapy, radiation, and surgery.
Normally, our cells grow and divide to produce new cells as the body needs them, and old or damaged cells die and are replaced by new ones. But sometimes, changes (mutations) in genes cause normal controls to break down. Cells start to grow out of control and may produce too many new cells or not produce enough replacement cells. These extra cells can build up and form a mass of tissue called a tumor. Some tumors are benign and do not invade other parts of the body. Others are malignant and can invade nearby tissues and spread to other parts of the body, where they can become a more serious type of cancer or even kill the person.
When cancer is found in the early stages, it is often easier to treat. The best way to prevent cancer is to avoid exposure to things that increase the risk of developing it, such as smoking and excessive sun exposure.
Cancer can also be prevented by taking steps to protect the immune system, such as vaccinations and avoiding infections. Doctors are working all the time to understand what causes cancer so that we can stop it from occurring and improve treatment.
Spotting cancer in the early stages saves lives. Everyone should learn to recognize the warning signs and talk to their doctors if they notice them. Some of the early warning signs can be confused with symptoms from less serious conditions, and some of them are specific to certain kinds of cancer. But spotting them can help doctors do the tests that can lead to a diagnosis of cancer, and they can get you the treatment you need as quickly as possible.
Some of the most common early warning signs of cancer are pain, weight loss, and fatigue. These can be caused by the cancer growing and putting pressure on nerves, blood vessels, or other tissues in the body. Cancer can also cause other problems, such as trouble breathing or a lump in the skin.
When it comes to cancer, early detection and treatment are key. Between 30 and 50% of cancers can be prevented by avoiding risks and practicing healthy behaviors. In addition, high-quality treatment and supportive care can help patients survive cancer.
While the overall number of new cases of cancer has been slowly decreasing for decades, it is still a leading cause of death in the United States and around the world. Cancer is caused by changes (mutations) in the body’s cells, and it can occur in almost any part of the body. When the mutated cells become malignant, they can grow out of control and invade nearby tissues and spread to other parts of your body.