Cancer is a large group of diseases that can start in almost any organ or tissue of the body when abnormal cells grow uncontrollably, go beyond their usual boundaries to invade adjoining parts of the body and/or spread to other organs. The latter process is called metastasizing and is a major cause of death from cancer. A neoplasm and malignant tumour are other common names for cancer. It is the second leading cause of death globally, accounting for an estimated 9.6 million deaths, or one in six deaths, in 2018. Lung, prostate, colorectal, stomach and liver cancer are the most common types of cancer in men, while breast, colorectal, lung, cervical and thyroid cancer are the most common among women.
It is a generic term for a large group of diseases that can affect any part of the body. Other terms used are malignant tumours and neoplasms. One defining feature of cancer is the rapid creation of abnormal cells that grow beyond their usual boundaries, and which can then invade adjoining parts of the body and spread to other organs; the latter process is referred to as metastasis. Widespread metastases are the primary cause of death from cancer. Cancer arises from the transformation of normal cells into tumour cells in a multi-stage process that generally progresses from a pre-cancerous lesion to a malignant tumour.
Here Are Some Ways To Reduce Your Cancer Risk:
- not using tobacco;
- maintaining a healthy body weight;
- eating a healthy diet, including fruit and vegetables;
- doing physical activity on a regular basis;
- avoiding or reducing consumption of alcohol;
- getting vaccinated against HPV and hepatitis B if you belong to a group for which vaccination is recommended;
- avoiding ultraviolet radiation exposure (which primarily results from exposure to the sun and artificial tanning devices) and/or using sun protection measures;
- ensuring safe and appropriate use of radiation in health care (for diagnostic and therapeutic purposes);
- minimizing occupational exposure to ionizing radiation; and
- reducing exposure to outdoor air pollution and indoor air pollution, including radon (a radioactive gas produced from the natural decay of uranium, which can accumulate in buildings — homes, schools and workplaces).
Over To You:
Between 30 and 50% of cancers can currently be prevented by avoiding risk factors and implementing existing evidence-based prevention strategies. Maintain a healthy lifestyle for the prevention of cancers.