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Cancer 101 - What is Cancer?

Why is cancer dangerous?

Cancer refers to any one of a large number of diseases characterized by the development of abnormal cells that divide uncontrollably.

Many cancers have the ability to infiltrate and destroy normal body tissue and organs.

When cancer cells spread throughout the body, this is called metastasis.
Once cancer metastasizes, it may become deadly.

Depending upon the type and location of the disease, the presence and growth of cancer can be dangerous.

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Who gets cancer?

Cancer doesn't discriminate when it comes to race, sex or age - anyone can get cancer.
However, the risk of getting most cancers increases with age.

The American Cancer Society (ACS) estimates that half of men and one-third of women in the United States will develop cancer in their lifetimes.

The ACS estimates that about 1.4 million new cases of cancer are expected in 2008, and about 560,000 people will die of the disease. There are over 10 million Americans alive today who, have at some point in their lives have been diagnosed with cancer.

  • Cancer is not necessarily a death sentence. Many people live long healthy lives, after being diagnosed with cancer, and die of something else.
  • Each cancer type has a different course, so discuss your specific diagnosis with your doctor.




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