Bladder Cancer

The bladder is part of the urinary tract that stores urine until you are ready (or feel the urge) to urinate.  Bladder cancer occurs when abnormal cells develop within the bladder. The exact cause of bladder cancer is relatively unknown but research has proven that smoking causes at least half of the diagnosed cases.  Blood in the urine is the primary symptom of bladder cancer. Most bladder cancers are transitional cell carcinomas that begin in the cells that make up the inner lining of the bladder. In 2009, it is estimated that there will be 71,000 diagnosed cases of bladder cancer; in most cases the cancer is found early enough and can be treated.

For more information about bladder cancer, click here:

http://www.cancer.gov/bladder

Bone Cancer

Bone cancer is a malignancy (a cancerous tumor) that resides in the bone and destroys healthy bone tissue.  Malignant tumors that begin in the bone are called primary bone cancer and are very rare accounting for less than 1 percent of all cancers. Many times, when a cancer is found in another part of the body (such as the breast) it can metastasize and spread to the bone.  Primary bone cancer is far less common than cancer that has spread to the bone.  Most primary bone cancers are sarcomas that will arise from soft tissue or cartilage. Surgery is the most common treatment for bone cancer.

For more information about bone cancer, click here:

http://www.cancer.gov/cancertopics/factsheet/Sites-Types/bone

Brain Cancer

Brain cancer is a disease in which cancer cells grow to form a mass in the tissue of the brain. Sometimes, these masses can grow large enough to disrupt normal brain activity and interfere with the senses, memory, body functions and control.  Primary brain cancer is cancer that starts in the brain; if the cancer is in the brain, but did not originate there, then it is metastatic brain cancer and thus traveled to the brain through the blood stream or lymphatic system from another area of the body (most commonly the lungs and breasts).  Brain cancer occurs infrequently affecting roughly 22,000 people per year. Treatment and prognosis are determined based upon where in the brain the cancer is residing, the size of the tumor and whether or not it is inoperable.

For more information about brain cancer, click here:

http://www.medicinenet.com/brain_cancer/article.htm

Breast Cancer

Breast cancer is the most common cancer among American women today—with the exception of skin cancer.  Breast cancer occurs when a malignant tumor develops in one or both of the breasts. While most breast cancers begin in the cells that line the ducts (ductal cancers), some begin in the cells that line the lobules (lobular cancers), while a small number start in other tissues.  Breast cancer will strike 1 in 8 women this year alone and most often will be found through a routine mammogram screening or by a physical symptom such as a lump.  There are many risk factors for developing breast cancer, but if you are a woman, you are already at risk.  Age, genetics, a previous diagnosis of breast cancer and other lifestyle factors are general contributors for the disease.  Treatment options will depend on the stage of the cancer but will usually include one or a mix of the following:  surgery (a mastectomy), radiation and chemotherapy.   Although breast cancer is the second leading cause of cancer deaths among women, survival rates for the disease continue to improve year after year.

For more information about breast cancer, click here:

http://www.cancer.org/docroot/CRI/CRI_2_1x.asp?rnav=criov&dt=5

Cervical Cancer

The cervix is the tissue that connects the uterus and the vagina.  When abnormal cells (dysplasia) grow within the cervix over a long period of time, the result can lead to cervical cancer. This particular type of cancer is usually found with a routine Pap test in which the walls of the cervix are scraped and analyzed under a microscope. Cervical cancer is almost always caused by the human papillomavirus (HPV) infection which is a sexually transmitted disease.  It is recommended that all young females get the HPV vaccination in order to help prevent cervical cancer in the future. In most cases, a woman will not have any real symptoms relating to cervical cancer which is why annual gynecological screening visits are so crucial. 

For more information about cervical cancer, click here:

www.cancer.gov/cervical

Colon Cancer

Colon cancer arises when cancerous cells develop and form in the large intestine (the colon) which represents the lower part of the digestive system.  Polyps are small, benign clumps of cells that can reside in the colon and if not found early and treated, will become colon cancer. When a person develops polyps, there are usually no symptoms, therefore, doctors recommend routine screening tests (such as a colonoscopy) in order to detect and treat the disease early.  Once the cancer has developed from a polyp, physical symptoms such as blood in the stool, fatigue and diarrhea can arise.  Colon cancer is treated based on the stage of the cancer and will usually consist of surgery (such as a colostomy where a part or all of the colon is removed) or through radiation and/or chemotherapy.

For more information about colon cancer, click here:

http://www.mayoclinic.com/health/colon-cancer/DS00035

Esophageal Cancer

The esophagus plays a major role in the human body because it is the primary tube that carries food and liquids from the throat to the stomach.  Esophageal cancer occurs when cancerous tumors develop inside the lining of the esophagus and is divided into two major types: squamous cell carcinoma (which arises in the squamous cells in the upper and middle part of the esophagus) and adenocarcinoma (which begins in the cells that make and release mucus and fluids and is represented in the lower part of the esophagus).   Smoking, tobacco and alcohol usage are the primary risk factors for a person developing this type of cancer.   A person who has a history of gastroesophageal reflux disease is also at risk.  Most often, this cancer will occur in Caucasian men over the age of 60.  Vomiting, coughing up blood, weight loss and a chronic sore throat are the symptoms associated with esophageal cancer.  Depending on the stage, there are several treatment options including surgery, chemotherapy, radiation, laser and photodynamic therapies.

For more information about esophageal cancer, click here:

http://www.medicinenet.com/esophageal_cancer/article.htm

Gastric Cancer

Gastric cancer is a disease in which malignant cells form in the lining of the stomach. Severe abdominal discomfort and indigestion are the most common symptoms of this cancer and in more advanced stages, jaundice, blood in the stool and vomiting can occur. Certain medical conditions as well as age, a diet high in salt, smoking, and a family history of stomach cancer are risk factors associated with the disease.  Unfortunately, once gastric cancer has been found, it is usually in the latter stage and cannot be cured.  When it is found early, there is a better chance of recovery and can be treated using surgery, chemotherapy, radiation, or a combination of the three.

For more information about gastric cancer, click here:

http://www.cancer.gov/cancertopics/pdq/treatment/gastric/Patient/page1

Head and Neck Cancer

Cancers of the head and neck make up a broad range of areas within the body—but most often develop in the cells that line mucosal surfaces such as the mouth, nose and throat. Aside from the known risk factors, more than 85% of head and neck cancers are caused through tobacco use and people that combine tobacco with alcohol are at an even greater risk. Most symptoms arise in and around the mouth, nose, and throat areas and can cause physical ailments such as a sore throat, a lump in the mouth, swelling, ear pain, etc. There are many variations of this type of cancer so depending on the exact site where the cancer has originated as well as the stage will determine the course of treatment.

For more information about head and neck cancers, click here:

http://www.cancer.gov/cancertopics/factsheet/Sites-Types/head-and-neck

Hodgkin’s Lymphona

Hodgkin’s lymphoma (also known as Hodgkin’s disease) is a cancer that affects the immune system (the lymph nodes, spleen, bone marrow and other internal organs) representative of a specific cell called the reed-Sternberg cell. Hodgkin’s lymphoma can affect anyone, but is more common in young adults as well as the elderly. Primary symptoms include an enlargement of the lymph nodes, spleen or other immune tissue as well as fever, weight loss, fatigue or night sweats.  These symptoms usually do not have pain. Due to advancements that have been made in treating the disease, survival rates in the first few years have climbed to over 90%.

For more information about Hodgkin’s Lymphoma, click here:

http://www.lymphomainfo.net/hodgkins

Leukemia

A healthy person will have three types of blood marrow running through their body—white blood cells to fight infection, red blood cells which carry oxygen and platelets which helps blood to clot. When a person has leukemia, they have a cancer of the healthy blood cells. It typically starts in the bone marrow (called leukemia cells), essentially where the blood cells are made. Leukemia can lead to a wide array of serious blood-related infections including anemia, bleeding, fever, headaches, swollen lymph nodes and more.  There are four distinct variations of leukemia (acute or chronic myelogenous leukemia and acute or chronic lymphocytic leukemia)—some affecting children, some striking only the elderly. Ultimately, depending on the age of the patient and the type of leukemia he or she has will determine the course of treatment.

For more information about leukemia, click here:

http://www.leukemia-lymphoma.org/all_page?item_id=7026

Lung Cancer

Lung cancer occurs when abnormal cells grow, multiply and mass together within the lung invading nearby healthy tissue. Lung cancer is a very aggressive form of cancer and is almost always caused by smoking or secondhand smoke.  It is the leading cause of cancer deaths in both men and women. When a person simply stops smoking, the risk of lung cancer decreases dramatically each year because normal cells will naturally replace abnormal or damaged cells. There are two major types of lung cancer:  non-small cell lung cancer (which is the most common form and usually spreads to different parts of the body) and small cell lung cancer. Lung cancer is typically only symptomatic in the latter stages and might include chronic coughing, wheezing, chest pain, fever, fatigue and repeated bouts of pneumonia or bronchitis.  Surgery is the first step in treating the cancer along with radiation or chemotherapy or a combination of the two.

For more information about lung cancer, click here:

http://www.cancer.gov/cancer_information/cancer_type/lung

Melanoma

Most all men and women have moles.  When abnormal cells join together within the melanocytes (cells that make the pigment melanin)—a skin cancer known as melanoma develops.   Of all skin cancers, melanoma is the most deadly and can arise out of a new mole, an existing mole or a mole that has been diagnosed as dysplastic or abnormal.  Melanoma can occur anywhere on the body but it is most commonly found on the trunk (the area between the shoulders and the hips) in men, and on the lower legs in women.   If a melanoma is found early, surgery can be performed to remove the cancerous cells and the prognosis is good; if a melanoma is not caught early, it can metastasize rather quickly and invade other parts of the body decreasing the survival rate. Routine skin examinations and regular screening from a dermatologist can help identify an irregular mole early.  Skin protection from the sun at all ages is the most important prevention.  People who have a family history of melanoma or are concerned about developing it, should talk to their doctor about the disease. 

For more information about melanoma, click here:

http://www.cancer.gov/cancertopics/wyntk/melanoma/page1

Mesothelioma

Mesothelioma is a very rare form of cancer in which cancerous cells are found in the protective sac (the mesothelium) that covers most of the body’s internal organs (lungs, heart, stomach, etc.).  Almost always, this cancer is caused by asbestos; people who work on jobs where they are exposed to and/or inhale asbestos particles are at high risk.  Because mesothelioma can occur at various areas within the body, the exact location and the stage will need to be determined first until a course of treatment can be determined.

For more information about mesothelioma, click here:

http://www.mesothelioma.net/

Multiple Myeloma

The human body carries a variety of blood cells: White blood cells help to fight infection, red blood cells carry oxygen throughout the body and platelets help the blood to clot in order to control bleeding.  Multiple myeloma is cancer that begins in a type of white blood cell called plasma cells.  Myeloma begins when a plasma cell becomes abnormal and then the abnormal cell multiplies and makes copies of itself and invades healthy tissue and bone.  The disease is termed multiple myeloma because it usually affects more than just one bone at the same time.  Multiple myeloma is usually diagnosed through a simple blood test and typically has symptoms of back pain, broken bones, a feeling of fatigue, feeling thirsty or dehydrated and reoccurring infections and fever.  For patients who are symptomatic, treatment will usually include anticancer drugs and possibly, a stem cell transplant and/or radiation.

For more information about multiple myeloma, click here:

http://www.medicinenet.com/multiple_myeloma/article.htm

Myelodysplastic Syndrome

When a person is diagnosed with myelodysplastic syndrome, he or she could potentially have one of a variety of cancers or diseases for which the bone marrow does not function properly. Essentially, in a patient with this disorder, the blood cells die prematurely in the bone marrow. This condition typically progresses slowly, over a long period or time, and for others, can develop rather quickly within a few weeks or months. Patients with this disease will have anemia, bruising, infections or consistent bleeding.  More than 30% of myelodysplastic syndrome patients will develop acute myeloid leukemia. There are many treatment options available for this disease and depending on the severity of the symptoms, age of the patient and medical history will help to determine the course of treatment.

For more information about myelodysplastic syndrome, click here:

http://www.leukemia-lymphoma.org/all_page?item_id=55445

Ovarian Cancer

Ovarian cancer occurs when abnormal (malignant) cells grow in one or both of the ovaries. This particular type of cancer—although rare—can be treated if found early, but unfortunately, in most cases the cancer usually has already spread by the time it is found. Some women are more likely to get ovarian cancer than others—including those who started their menses prior to the age of 12, those who have never had a baby and women who have taken hormone replacement therapy, or started menopause after the age of 50.  Surgical removal of one or both of the ovaries is usually the first reference of treatment followed by chemotherapy and/or radiation. The prognosis is determined based upon the stage the cancer was in when it was initially diagnosed.

For more information about ovarian cancer, click here:

http://www.cancer.gov/ovarian

Pancreatic Cancer

The pancreas is a large organ that lies just behind the lower part of the stomach.  Its job is to produce juices to help digest food and to produce hormones (such as insulin) that help control blood sugar levels. Pancreatic cancer begins in the tissues of the pancreas and in most cases, when found, it unfortunately almost always has a poor prognosis. Signs and symptoms of pancreatic cancer include jaundice, unexplained weight loss and fatigue and usually occur once the cancer is already in an advanced stage and inoperable.  Smoking is a leading cause of pancreatic cancer, as is long-standing diabetes and chronic pancreatitis.

For more information about pancreatic cancer, click here:

http://www.mayoclinic.com/health/pancreatic-cancer/DS00357

Prostate Cancer

Prostate cancer is one of the most common cancers among men in the United States. This year alone, more than 190,000 men will be diagnosed with this disease and one in two of these men will be over the age of 72. The prostrate is the walnut-shaped gland in the male reproductive system that is responsible for producing the fluids that make up semen; when abnormal cells collect in the prostrate, cancer occurs. Fortunately for most men, this type of cancer is caught early through routine screening and check-ups.  Once the cancer begins to develop into a later stage, serious urinary problems will occur along with other symptoms.  There are a variety of treatment options available today to treat prostrate cancer

For more information about prostrate cancer, click here:

http://www.webmd.com/prostate-cancer/default.htm

Rectal Cancer

The rectum is part of the digestive track located in the lower part of the colon (the large intestine) that connects the large bowel to the anus.  The primary function of the rectum is to store formed stool in preparation for elimination.  When cancer of the rectum forms, it usually occurs in the lining.  When cancer forms in the colon or in the rectum, the cancer is sometimes referred to as colorectal cancer. Because treatment and progression of colon cancer and rectal cancer may be different, they are often reported separately.  Rectal cancer is more likely to produce symptoms prior to diagnosis than colon cancers because the tumor is much closer to the anus thus a passage of blood in the stool is visible.  There are about 36,500 cases of rectal cancer diagnosed per year in the United States.  Together, colon and rectal cancers account for 10% of cancers in men and 11% of cancers in women.  Early screening (via a colonoscopy) can help catch the cancer early—usually while it is still in a polyp stage.

For more information about rectal cancer, click here:

http://www.oncologychannel.com/rectalcancer/index.shtml#screening

Renal Cancer

Renal cancer is a disease of one or both of the kidneys in which malignant (cancer) cells form in the tubules of the organ.  Smoking and the misuse of certain drugs can increase the risk of developing renal cancer.  Renal cancer may not present early symptoms but as the tumor grows, blood in the urine, fatigue, a lump in the abdomen and other symptoms may arise. Renal cancer, if caught in the early stage can be treated with surgery, chemotherapy or radiation.

For more information about renal cancer, click here:

http://www.cancer.gov/cancertopics/pdq/treatment/renalcell/patient

Skin Cancer

The skin is the largest organ of the human body.  It covers and protects all internal organs, serves as a barrier from germs and helps regulate body temperature.  Skin cancer occurs when abnormal cells collect and grow anywhere on, or within the skin.  There are various types of skin cancer; melanoma, which generally occurs within a mole, is the most serious, most aggressive and deadliest of all skin cancers and accounts for more than 68,000 diagnoses each year.  More than 1 million people annually are diagnosed with other skin cancers (non-melanoma) such as basal cell cancer and squamous cell cancer—both are less aggressive and almost always curable.  Skin cancer, unlike many cancers, does have the potential to be detected early on.  Any change on the skin in a bump or mole, or if there is a new growth or area on the skin that is matched with scaliness or a change in sensation, itchiness or tenderness, should be checked by a doctor.  Protecting the skin from the sun is the most important prevention method a person can do in order to help prevent skin cancer.

For more information about skin cancer, click here:

http://www.cancer.gov/cancertopics/types/skin

Testicular Cancer

Testicular cancer is a cancer that occurs in one or both of the testicles—an organ that is part of the male reproductive system.  It most often affects men in their twenties, and is one of the most common and most curable of all cancer types.  Similar to breast cancer in women, men should conduct self-exams to check for lumps of any size so that any new growth can be examined by a doctor.  While treatment for testicular cancer is effective in eradicating the cancer, it can also leave a mean sterile. There are several treatment options for testicular cancer depending on the stage of the cancer.

For more information about testicular cancer, click here:

http://www.medicinenet.com/testicular_cancer/article.htm

Thyroid Cancer

The thyroid gland is an organ that resides at the base of the throat.  It is responsible for producing hormones that help to control blood pressure, body temperature, heart rate and weight.  Cancer of the thyroid gland occurs when cells located in the thyroid mutate and undergo genetic changes, causing, in most cases, a lump that can be felt in the neck area.  Although thyroid cancer is generally uncommon, there are several different varieties of the disease that can affect different individuals based on age or other previous thyroid conditions the person may have had. Thyroid cancer can be treated with surgery, radiation and/or chemotherapy.

For more information about thyroid cancer, click here:

http://www.mayoclinic.com/health/thyroid-cancer/DS00492

Uterine Cancer

The uterus is the pear-shaped organ located in the female reproductive system where a baby grows. Uterine cancer begins when cells in the uterus begin to change, grow out of control and form tumors. Uterine cancer is the most common type of cancer affecting a woman’s reproductive system; it is also referred to as endometrial cancer because 95% of uterine cancers diagnosed begin in the lining of the endometrium (specifically, referred to as adenocarcinoma).  If caught in the relatively early phases, uterine cancer has a five-year relative survival rate of about 96%.  Symptoms typically include unusual vaginal bleeding, pain during sexual intercourse and pain in the pelvic region. Surgery, chemotherapy and radiation (or a combination of the three) are the recommended treatment options.

For more information about uterine cancer, click here:

http://www.cancer.gov/cancerinfo/types/uterinesarcoma