How do You Get Cancer?

Cancer is a growing epidemic that affects millions of people every year. Cancer is in fact not so much a specific disease, but a process that can affect the cells in your body, causing them to grow abnormally and impair the function of nearby tissues. Understanding this process and what may cause this abnormal growth to begin is an essential first step toward managing this disease in the future.

What is Cancer?

The term cancer refers to a group of over 100 diseases that stem from out of control cell growth. When cells become damaged and begin to divide at an out of control rate it will cause a mass of tissue known as a tumor to form. As these tumors get progressively larger they can interfere with the body’s natural processes including the circulatory, digestive and nervous systems. Some tumors also release hormones that will alter the way your body functions, leading to additional health damage.

Types of cancer are typically classified based on the kind of cells that happen when this occurs. Cancerous tumors can form because the affected cells are creating new blood vessels that feed this increase in tissue or because the cells themselves move throughout the body and create new growth as it invades different areas. In this case, the cancer is going through a process known as metastasis, which can be quite severe. A distinct exception to these rules is leukemia, which grows within the blood stream itself, impairing the natural function of this system over time.

The following video also provides insight on the nature of cancer and how this disease works:

Understanding what cancer cells are is only the first step in understanding the disease as a whole. You will also need to understand how different triggers play a role in causing this disease to appear. Knowing your risk can help you and your doctor understand what steps might be necessary in reducing your risk for developing the disease.

How Do You Get Cancer?

Ultimately, cancer is caused by cells that begin to grow at an uncontrollable rate without dying. In normal circumstances cells will grow, divide and die off, a process known as apoptosis. When this system does not function like it should, cancer cells that do not have a programmatic death will begin to grow and divide without dying off, causing them to grow out of control.


There is no single cause that will lead to this occurrence, but there are some circumstances that can increase a patient’s risk of these abnormal cells developing.

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