We all know someone who has been affected by cancer, whether it be a close relative or a close family member. Out of all the people who have been affected by it; some lost the battle, some are still fighting, and some will be diagnosed by it today.
Most of us know have some pre-conceived notions about cancer; some factual and some not so much. But we need to ask ourselves what exactly is cancer? Why do only a few members of society are diagnosed with it? and Why is it that some people are battling multiple cancers?
By definition cancer is caused by abnormal cells that multiply controllably and destroy body tissue. If you are anything like that doesn't really help me much. So I have decided to take it into my own hands and do my own research.
Our body is made up of billions of cells that help us conquer our day to day activities. There are over 200 different types of cells in our human body; red blood cells (Erythrocyte), white blood cells (Monocyte), and many more.
There are over 100 different types of cancer and each one of those cancers is classified by the type of cell affected. All cells in our body have a specific job to do and normal cells multiply and divide by the second. With cancer the cells grow out of control and take over cells that are growing normally and spread throughout the body.
Whichever body part the cells start dividing uncontrollably is where the cancer starts. For example if the cells start dividing in one of your breasts and eventually spread to your bones it's still breast cancer not bone cancer. The spreading of cancer cells is called Metastasis.
Some cancer cells spread and grow rapidly faster than others. Most cancers form lumps called tumors, but not lumps are cancerous. For a lump to be cancerous (spread to other parts of the body) it has to be malignant. If the lump isn't cancerous (doesn't spread) then it's known as benignant.
There are 4 stages for every cancer. Staging is a way to describe the size of cancer and how far it has grown. Staging helps identify what kind of treatment the individual has to go through. Stage 1 means it is small and it is within the organ it started in. Stage 2 is the cancer hasn't started spreading yet, but it is larger in size than stage 1. Stage 3 is it started to spread to surrounding lymph nodes and it is larger than stage 1 and 2 combined. Stage 4 is the cancer has spread to other areas of the body.