Cancer is basically the uncontrolled growth of our body cells. It is a leading cause of death all over the world. The main reason behind the formation of a cancerous lesion is a mutation of genes. It could arise from any tissue in the body from muscle, bone, brain, eye, skin, has many more.
Cancerous cells take over the normal physiologic mechanisms and lead to impaired functions of the body by competing for nutrients and space with our normal body cells. This condition could progress from being localized to a single site to spreading to other organs.
What are the Types of Cancer?
There are 2 types of cancers namely benign, and malignant cancer.
Benign cancers are harmless; they don’t spread to other organs or progress. On the other hand, the malignant variety of cancers. It has the potential to spread and give rise to secondary cancers in other organs. And being more difficult to diagnose and treat, they are the deadlier kind.
What are the causes of cancer?
There are many reasons for the formation of cancerous cells in the body. It is a normal physiologic mechanism, but the body cells manage to get rid of them by identifying the abnormal cells. But, when the body ceases to identify such cells and eradicate them, it leads to the formation of uncontrolled growth. There have been extensive studies going on regarding this subject and is presently the most researched by medical science.
It can broadly divide into a few general categories physical, genetic, chemical, physiological, and biological causes, etc.
Certain habits like smoking, chewing tobacco, alcoholism, less physical activity could cause cancer. Lifestyle causes account for 70-90% of the cancers.
Tobacco and cigarette smoking increases the risk of developing lung cancer by 3 folds according to studies.
Alcohol intake has been proven to cause cancer of the oral cavity, pharynx, larynx, esophagus, and liver, and may increase the risk of breast and colorectal cancer.
The use of combine oral contraceptives accounts for a slight increase in the risk of breast cancer. Hormone replacement therapy is associate with an increase in the risk of breast and endometrial cancers.
Energy imbalance due to a Western lifestyle causes increase serum levels of a hormone call as Insulin-like growth factor-1 which is predictive of an elevate risk for prostate cancer.
Single or multiple exposures to radiation cause mutation of genes, therefore, leading to Cancer. Certain occupational groups who work with Radiation like Lab technicians, workers of nuclear power plants who do not use protective gear are more likely to get cancers due to the same reason.
Ultraviolet radiation is mostly known to cause skin cancers. Whereas alpha and beta rays too can cause cancers of various sites.
Even most familiar Sun rays are known to cause skin cancer in certain individuals. Apart from these Gamma rays, X-rays, are also known to be causes of various types of cancers.
Substances that induce cancer are called carcinogens. Certain substances like fertilizers and pesticides, manufacture related raw materials, chemical acids, and salts are known to cause cancers. There are innumerable chemicals that are capable of doing the same.