Cancer by Type
WHAT IS CANCER?
Cancer is a group of over 100 diseases characterized by uncontrolled growth and spread of abnormal cells, which if not controlled can result in death. 86% of all cancers in the US are diagnosed in people 50 years or older.
STAGING OF CANCER
A cancer is always referred to by the stage it was given at diagnosis, even if it gets worse or spreads. New information about how a cancer has changed over time gets added onto the original stage. So, the stage doesn’t change, even though the cancer might.
- Stage 0: Abnormal cells are present but have not spread to nearby tissue. Also called carcinoma in situ, or CIS. CIS is not cancer, but it may become cancer.
- Stage I, Stage II, and Stage III: Cancer is present. The higher the number, the larger the cancer tumor and the more it has spread into nearby tissues.
- Stage IV: The cancer has spread to distant parts of the body.
WHO IS AT RISK?
- The probability an individual will develop and die from cancer over a lifetime.
- US Men: 1 in 2 lifetime risk (42%)
- US Women: 1 in 3 lifetime risk (38%)
- Measure of strength between risk factors and a particular cancer.
- Smokers: 25 times more likely to develop lung cancer than non-smokers.
- Females with first-degree relative with breast cancer twice as likely of developing breast cancer.
Breast cancer starts when cells in the breast begin to grow out of control. These cells usually form a tumor that can often be seen on an x-ray or felt as a lump. The tumor is malignant (cancerous) if the cells can grow into (invade) surrounding tissues or spread (metastasize) to distant areas of the body. Breast cancer occurs almost entirely in women, but men can get it, too.
Cervical cancer starts in the cells lining the cervix — the lower part of the uterus (womb). This is sometimes called the uterine cervix. The fetus grows in the body of the uterus (the upper part). The cervix connects the body of the uterus to the vagina (birth canal).
Most cervical cancers begin in the cells in the transformation zone. (The exact location of the transformation zone changes as you get older and if you give birth.) These cells do not suddenly change into cancer. Instead, the normal cells of the cervix first gradually develop pre-cancerous changes that turn into cancer. Doctors use several terms to describe these pre-cancerous changes, including cervical intraepithelial neoplasia (CIN), squamous intraepithelial lesion (SIL), and dysplasia. These changes can be detected by the Pap test and treated to prevent cancer from developing
Colorectal cancer is a cancer that starts in the colon or the rectum. These cancers can also be named colon cancer or rectal cancer, depending on where they start. Colon cancer and rectal cancer are often grouped together because they have many features in common. Most colorectal cancers begin as a growth on the inner lining of the colon or rectum called a polyp. Some types of polyps can change into cancer over the course of several years, but not all polyps become cancer. The chance of changing into a cancer depends on the kind of polyp.
Each year in the United States, about 21,000 men and 8,000 women get liver cancer, and about 16,000 men and 8,000 women die from the disease. The percentage of Americans who get liver cancer has been rising for several decades. To lower your risk for liver cancer, get vaccinated against Hepatitis B, get tested for Hepatitis C, and don’t drink too much alcohol.
Lung cancer starts when cells of the lung become abnormal and begin to grow out of control. As more cancer cells develop, they can form into a tumor and spread to other areas of the body.
There are 2 main types of lung cancer:
- About 80% to 85% of lung cancers are non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC)
- About 10% to 15% are small cell lung cancer (SCLC)
ORAL, HEAD & NECK CANCER
Head and neck cancers are cancers that start in the tissues and organs of the head and neck. They include cancers of the larynx (voice box), throat, lips, mouth, nose and salivary glands. Oral cavity cancer, or just oral cancer, is cancer that starts in the mouth (also called the oral cavity). Oropharyngeal cancer starts in the oropharynx, which is the part of the throat just behind the mouth.
Source: cancer.org & cancer.gov
Prostate cancer is the most common cancer in men in the United States, after skin cancer. It is the second leading cause of death from cancer in men. Almost all prostate cancers are adenocarcinomas (cancers that begin in cells that make and release mucus and other fluids).
Skin cancer is the most common type of cancer. It usually forms in skin that has been exposed to sunlight, but can occur anywhere on the body. Squamous cell and basal cell skin cancers are sometimes called nonmelanoma skin cancers. Nonmelanoma skin cancer usually responds to treatment and rarely spreads to other parts of the body. Melanoma is more aggressive than most other types of skin cancer. If it isn’t diagnosed early, it is likely to invade nearby tissues and spread to other parts of the body.