How to Identify Different Types Of Cancer

How to Identify Different Types Of Cancer

How to Identify Different Types Of Cancer


 

Cancer is a group of more than 100 different diseases. It can develop almost anywhere in the body. Cells are the basic units that make up the human body. Cells grow and divide to make new cells as the body needs them. Usually, cells die when they get too old or damaged. Then, new cells take their place.

Cancer begins when genetic changes interfere with this orderly process. Cells start to grow uncontrollably. These cells may form a mass called a tumor. A tumor can be cancerous or benign. A cancerous tumor is malignant, meaning it can grow and spread to other parts of the body. A benign tumor means the tumor can grow but will not spread.

Types Of Cancer

There are different types of cancer, but Doctors divide cancer into types based on where it began. Four main types of cancer are:

  • A carcinoma begins in the skin or the tissue that covers the surface of internal organs and glands. Carcinomas usually form solid tumors. They are the most common type of cancer. Examples of carcinomas include prostate cancerbreast cancerlung cancer, and colorectal cancer.
  • sarcoma begins in the tissues that support and connect the body. A sarcoma can develop in fat, muscles, nerves, tendons, joints, blood vessels, lymph vessels, cartilage, or bone.
  • Leukemia is a cancer of the blood. Leukemia begins when healthy blood cells change and grow uncontrollably. The four main types of leukemia are acute lymphocytic leukemiachronic lymphocytic leukemiaacute myeloid leukemia, and chronic myeloid leukemia.
  • Lymphoma is a cancer that begins in the lymphatic system. The lymphatic system is a network of vessels and glands that help fight infection. There are two main types of lymphomas: Hodgkin lymphoma and non-Hodgkin lymphoma.

Now from the four major type of cancer it break down to the following:

  • Bladder Cancer
  • Breast Cancer
  • Colorectal Cancer
  • Kidney Cancer
  • Lung Cancer – Non-Small Cell
  • Lymphoma – Non-Hodgkin
  • Melanoma
  • Oral and Oropharyngeal Cancer
  • Pancreatic Cancer
  • Prostate Cancer
  • Thyroid Cancer
  • Uterine Cancer

Today, I’ll discuss little on this types of cancer, and how they begin in the human body or develop in the cell. First, let’s begin with:

Bladder Cancer

Bladder cancer begins when healthy cells in the bladder lining—most commonly urothelial cells—change and grow out of control, forming a mass called a tumor. Urothelial cells also line the renal pelvis and ureters.

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Cancer that develops in the renal pelvis and ureters is also considered a type of bladder cancer and is often called upper tract bladder cancer. It is treated in the same way as bladder cancer. A tumor can be cancerous or benign.

Types Of Bladder Cancer

There are different types of bladder cancer, depends on how the tumor’s cells look under the microscope. The 3 main types of bladder cancer are:

  • Urothelial carcinoma.Urothelial carcinoma (or UCC) accounts for about 90% of all bladder cancers. It also accounts for 10% to 15% of kidney cancers diagnosed in adults. It begins in the urothelial cells found in the urinary tract. Urothelial carcinoma is sometimes also called transitional cell carcinoma or TCC.
  • Squamous cell carcinoma.Squamous cells develop in the bladder lining in response to irritation and inflammation. Over time, these cells may become cancerous. Squamous cell carcinoma accounts for about 4% of all bladder cancers.
  • This type accounts for about 2% of all bladder cancers and develops from glandular cells.

Breast Cancer

The breast is made up of different tissue, ranging from very fatty tissue to very dense tissue.  Cancer begins when healthy cells in the breast change and grow out of control, forming a mass or sheet of cells called a tumor. Breast cancer spreads when the cancer grows into other parts of the body or when breast cancer cells move to other parts of the body through the blood vessels and/or lymph vessels. This is called metastasis.

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Although breast cancer most commonly spreads to nearby lymph nodes, it can also spread further through the body to areas such as the bones, lungs, liver, and brain. This is called metastatic or stage IV breast cancer.

Types Of Breast Cancer

Breast cancer can be invasive or noninvasive. Invasive breast cancer is cancer that spreads into surrounding tissues. Noninvasive breast cancer does not go beyond the milk ducts or lobules in the breast. Most breast cancers start in the ducts or lobes and are called ductal carcinoma or lobular carcinoma:

  • Ductal carcinoma.These cancers starts in the cells lining the milk ducts and make up the majority of breast cancers.
    • Ductal carcinoma in situ (DCIS).This is cancer that is located only in the duct.
    • Invasive or infiltrating ductal carcinoma.This is cancer that has spread outside of the duct.
  • Lobular carcinoma.This is cancer that starts in the lobules.
    • Lobular carcinoma in situ (LCIS).LCIS is located only in the lobules. LCIS is not considered cancer. However, LCIS is a risk factor for developing invasive breast cancer in both breasts.
    • Invasive lobular carcinoma.This is cancer that has spread outside of the lobules
  • Medullary
  • Mucinous
  • Tubular
  • Metaplastic
  • Papillary
  • Inflammatory breast cancer is a faster-growing type of cancer that accounts for about 1% to 5% of all breast cancers.
  • Paget’s disease is a type of cancer that begins in the ducts of the nipple. Although it is usually in situ, it can also be an invasive cancer.

Colorectal Cancer

Colorectal cancer begins when healthy cells in the lining of the colon or rectum change and grow out of control, forming a mass called a tumor.  Colorectal cancer most often begins as a polyp, a noncancerous growth that may develop on the inner wall of the colon or rectum as people get older.

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If not treated or removed, a polyp can become a potentially life-threatening cancer. Finding and removing precancerous polyps can prevent colorectal cancer.

There are several forms of polyps.  About 10% of colon polyps are flat and hard to find with a colonoscopy unless a dye is used to highlight them. These flat polyps have a high risk of becoming cancerous, regardless of their size.

Hyperplastic polyps may also develop in the colon and rectum. They are not considered precancerous.

Kidney Cancer

Every person has 2 kidneys, which are located above the waist on both sides of the spine. The kidneys filter blood to remove impurities, excess minerals and salts, and extra water. Every day, the kidneys filter about 200 quarts of blood to generate 2 quarts of urine. The kidneys also produce hormones that help control blood pressure, red blood cell production, and other bodily functions.

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Kidney cancer begins when healthy cells in 1 or both kidneys change and grow out of control, forming a mass called a renal cortical tumor. A tumor can be malignant, indolent, or benign. A malignant tumor is cancerous, meaning it can grow and spread to other parts of the body.

Types of kidney cancer

There are several types of kidney cancer:

  • Renal cell carcinoma.Renal cell carcinoma is the most common type of adult kidney cancer, making up about 85% of diagnoses. This type of cancer develops in the proximal renal tubules that make up the kidney’s filtration system.

 

  • Urothelial carcinoma.This is also called transitional cell carcinoma. It accounts for 10% to 15% of the kidney cancers diagnosed in adults. Urothelial carcinoma begins in the area of the kidney where urine collects before moving to the bladder, called the renal pelvis. This type of kidney cancer is treated like bladder cancer because both types of cancer start in the same cells.

 

  • Sarcoma of the kidney is rare. This type of cancer develops in the soft tissue of the kidney; the thin layer of connective tissue surrounding the kidney, called the capsule; or surrounding fat. Sarcoma of the kidney is usually treated with surgery. However, sarcoma commonly comes back in the kidney area or spreads to other parts of the body. More surgery or chemotherapy may be recommended after the first surgery.

 

  • Wilms tumor.Wilms tumor is most common in children and is treated differently from kidney cancer in adults. This type of tumor is more likely to be successfully treated with radiation therapy and chemotherapy than the other types of kidney cancer when combined with surgery. This has resulted in a different approach to treatment.

 

  • Lymphoma can enlarge both kidneys and is associated with enlarged lymph nodes, called lymphadenopathy, in other parts of the body, including the neck, chest, and abdominal cavity. In rare cases, kidney lymphoma can appear as a lone tumor mass in the kidney and may include enlarged regional lymph nodes.

Lung Cancer

Lung cancer affects more than 200,000 Americans each year. Although cigarette smoking is the main cause, anyone can develop lung cancer. Lung cancer is always treatable, no matter the size, location, whether the cancer has spread, and how far it has spread.

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Because lung cancer is associated with smoking, patients may feel that they won’t receive much support or help because they believe that others will think that their behavior caused the disease. The truth is that most smokers do not develop lung cancer, and not all people diagnosed with lung cancer smoke.

Lung cancer is a disease that can affect anyone. In fact, most people who get lung cancer today have either stopped smoking years earlier or never smoked.

Lymphoma – Non-Hodgkin

Lymphoma is a cancer of the lymphatic system. Lymphoma begins when healthy B cells, T cells, or NK cells in the lymphatic system change and grow out of control, which may form a tumor. Hodgkin lymphoma is a specific type of lymphoma.

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Non-Hodgkin lymphoma (NHL) is a term that refers to a group of cancers of the lymphatic system. These cancers can have different symptoms and signs, findings on a physical examination, and treatments.

Because lymphatic tissue is found in most parts of the body, NHL can start almost anywhere and can spread, or metastasize, to almost any organ. It often begins in the lymph nodes, liver, spleen, or bone marrow. However, it can also involve the stomach, intestines, skin, thyroid gland, brain, or any other part of the body.

Melanoma Cancer

The skin is the largest organ in the body. It protects against infection and injury and helps regulate body temperature. The skin also stores water and fat and produces vitamin D.

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The skin is made up of 3 main layers:

  • Epidermis: the outer layer of skin
  • Dermis: the inner layer of skin
  • Hypodermis: the deep layer of fat

The deepest layer of the epidermis, located just above the dermis, contains cells called melanocytes. Melanocytes produce the skin’s pigment or color. Melanoma begins when healthy melanocytes change and grow out of control, forming a cancerous tumor.

Sometimes, melanoma develops from a normal mole a person already has on their skin. When this happens, the mole will undergo changes that usually can be seen, such as changes in shape, size, color, or the border of the mole.

When found early, melanoma can often be cured with surgery. However, melanoma is 1 of the most serious forms of skin cancer. It can grow deep into the skin, called invasive melanoma. It can also invade lymph nodes and blood vessels and spread to distant parts of the body, called metastatic melanoma. Melanoma may also develop in the eye.

Oral And Oropharyngeal Cancer

Cancer of the oral cavity and cancer of the oropharynx are 2 of the most common types of cancer that develop in the head and neck region, a grouping called  head and neck cancer.  The oral cavity and oropharynx, along with other parts of the head and neck, give us the ability to chew, swallow, breathe, and talk.

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The oral cavity includes the:

  • Lips
  • Lining of the lips and cheeks, called the buccal mucosa
  • Gingiva, which is the upper and lower gums
  • Front two-thirds of the tongue
  • Floor of the mouth under the tongue
  • Hard palate, also called the roof of the mouth
  • Retromolar trigone, which is the small area behind the wisdom teeth

The oropharynx begins where the oral cavity stops. It includes the:

  • Soft palate at the back of the mouth
  • Part of the throat behind the mouth
  • Tonsils
  • Base of the tongue

More than 90% of oral and oropharyngeal cancers are squamous cell carcinoma. This means that they begin in the flat, squamous cells found in the lining of the mouth and throat. The most common locations for cancer in the oral cavity are:

  • Tongue
  • Tonsils
  • Oropharynx
  • Gums
  • Floor of the mouth

Although oral cancer and oropharyngeal cancer are commonly described using 1 phrase, it is important to identify exactly where the cancer began. This is because there are differences in treatment between the 2 locations.

Pancreatic Cancer

There are several types of pancreatic cancer, depending on whether the cancer began in the exocrine or endocrine component. Rarely, other types of cancer can begin in the pancreas, such as lymphoma and sarcoma.

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  • Exocrine tumors. These are the most common type of pancreatic cancer. And adenocarcinoma is the most common type of exocrine tumor. These tumors usually start in the ducts of the pancreas, called ductal adenocarcinoma. Much less commonly, if the tumor begins in the acini, it is called acinar adenocarcinoma.

An increasingly common diagnosis is called intraductal papillary mucinous neoplasm (IPMN). An IPMN is a tumor that grows within the ducts of the pancreas and makes a thick fluid called mucin. IPMN is not cancerous when it begins but could become cancerous if not treated. Sometimes, an IPMN has already worsened and become a cancer by the time it is diagnosed.

  • Endocrine tumors. These are also called pancreatic neuroendocrine tumors (PNETs) or islet cell tumors. They are much less common than exocrine tumors, making up about 7% of pancreatic cancers. A pancreatic neuroendocrine tumor can be functioning or nonfunctioning. A functioning tumor makes hormones. A nonfunctioning tumor does not make hormones.

To learn more about tumors that start in the endocrine component of the pancreas, read about Pancreatic cancer.

Prostate Cancer

The prostate is a walnut-sized gland located behind the base of a man’s penis, in front of the rectum, and below the bladder. As men get older, the prostate continues to enlarge over time. This can lead to a condition called benign prostatic hypertrophy (BPH), which is when the urethra becomes blocked. BPH is a common condition associated with growing older, and it can cause symptoms similar to those of prostate cancer.

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Cancer begins when healthy cells in the prostate change and grow out of control, forming a tumor. A tumor can be cancerous or benign. Prostate cancer is somewhat unusual when compared with other types of cancer. This is because many prostate tumors do not spread quickly to other parts of the body.

Some prostate cancers grow very slowly and may not cause symptoms or problems for years or ever. Even when prostate cancer has spread to other parts of the body, it often can be managed for a long time, allowing men even with advanced prostate cancer to live with good health and quality of life for many years. However, if the cancer cannot be well controlled with existing treatments, it can cause symptoms like pain and fatigue and can sometimes lead to death.

Thyroid Cancer

Thyroid cancer begins in the thyroid gland. This gland is located in the front of the neck just below the larynx, which is called the voice box. The thyroid gland is part of the endocrine system, which regulates hormones in the body.

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Thyroid cancer starts when healthy cells in the thyroid change and grow out of control, forming a mass called a tumor.

Types Of Thyroid Cancer

There are 5 main types of thyroid cancer:

  • Papillary thyroid cancer. Papillary thyroid cancer develops from follicular cells and usually grow slowly. It is the most common type of thyroid cancer. It is usually found in 1 lobe. Only 10% to 20% of papillary thyroid cancer appears in both lobes. It is a differentiated thyroid cancer, meaning that the tumor looks similar to normal thyroid tissue under a microscope. Papillary thyroid cancer can often spread to lymph nodes.

 

  • Follicular thyroid cancer. Follicular thyroid cancer also develops from follicular cells and usually grows slowly. Follicular thyroid cancer is also a differentiated thyroid cancer, but it is far less common than papillary thyroid cancer. Follicular thyroid cancer rarely spreads to lymph nodes.

Follicular thyroid cancer and papillary thyroid cancer are the most common differentiated thyroid cancers. They are very often curable, especially when found early and in people younger than 50. Together, follicular and papillary thyroid cancers make up about 95% of all thyroid cancer.

  • Hurthle cell cancer. Hurthle cell cancer, also called Hurthle cell carcinoma, is cancer that is arises from a certain type of follicular cell. Hurthle cell cancers are much more likely to spread to lymph nodes than other follicular thyroid cancers.

 

  • Medullary thyroid cancer (MTC). MTC develops in the C cells and is sometimes the result of a genetic syndrome called multiple endocrine neoplasia type 2 (MEN2). This tumor has very little, if any, similarity to normal thyroid tissue. MTC can often be controlled if it is diagnosed and treated before it spreads to other parts of the body. MTC accounts for about 3% of all thyroid cancers. About 25% of all MTC is familial. This means that family members of the patient will have a possibility of a similar diagnosis.

 

  • Anaplastic thyroid cancer.This type is rare, accounting for about 1% of thyroid cancer. It is a fast-growing, poorly differentiated thyroid cancer that may start from differentiated thyroid cancer or a benign thyroid tumor. Anaplastic thyroid cancer can be subtyped into giant cell classifications. Because this type of thyroid cancer grows so quickly, it is more difficult to treat successfully.

Uterine Cancer

Uterine cancer is the most common cancer occurring in a woman’s reproductive system. Uterine cancer begins when healthy cells in the uterus change and grow out of control, forming a mass called a tumor. A tumor can be cancerous or benign.

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There are 2 major types of uterine cancer:

  • This type makes up more than 80% of uterine cancers. It develops from cells in the endometrium. This cancer is commonly called endometrial cancer. One common endometrial adenocarcinoma is called endometrioid carcinoma, and treatment varies depending on the grade of the tumor, how far it goes into the uterus, and the stage or extent of disease.
  • This type of uterine cancer develops in the supporting tissues of the uterine glands or in the myometrium, which is the uterine muscle. Sarcoma accounts for about 2% to 4% of uterine cancers. In most situations, sarcomas are treated differently from adenocarcinomas. Types of endometrial sarcoma include leiomyosarcoma, endometrial stromal sarcoma, and undifferentiated sarcoma.

With the help of different cancer from this post, you can do more research to become more enlighten.  Remember you stand the chance to survive cancer disease when you seek for early medical help or support from different cancer foundation.

Don’t die in silence, ensure you always hold a positive mindset about who you are, and not what the state of you health seems to be.

This article on "Hkitnob: Health Columns" is for informational purposes only, and is not meant to offer medical advice.