Cancer Facts Everyone Should Know

Cancer is one of the leading causes of death worldwide

Here is one ugly cancer fact – before you finish reading this post, cancer would have claimed the life of at least one person, somewhere in the world.

Cancer is a menace to our world, it is one word that can crash our world.

I dread the word, but I know fear is not the solution, knowledge is!

Hence, why I’m writing these cancer facts today, I hope what you learn helps you stay cancer free.

And in case you don’t know, there are over 100 different types of cancer.

The most common form of cancer is breast cancer, lung cancer, skin cancer, prostate cancer, colon cancer, ovarian cancer, and bone cancer. You can read more on the types of cancer here

This post on cancer facts will focus on the most common types of cancer and the most important things you need to know about each one.

General Cancer Facts You Should Know

Cancer is an out of control growth and distribution of abnormal cell that can affect any part of the body.

Early doctors described tumors with veins or extensions as crab-like, it will interest you to know that cancer is the Latin word for crab (krab).

The first description of cancer was in Egypt as far back as 1600 B.C, it was found in the ancient Egyptian medical textbook known as the Edwin Smith Papyrus.

Half of cancer and cancer-related deaths are preventable. What this means is, about 2-3 million annual death that is caused by cancer can have been avoided.

cancer facts everyone should know

Ever heard of the Naked mole-rat? If no is your answer, well it means you don’t know one rodent that could help us find the treatment for cancer and possibly prevention in the nearest future.

One cancer fact that the media and people, in general, don’t pay attention to is the number of people who have survived the dreaded disease. There are about 28 million cancer survivors worldwide, it’s not all bad news – Cancer is not a death sentence!

Cancer can be hereditary, between 5-10% of all cancers are hereditary but your lifestyle also plays a role – smoking, alcohol consumption, obesity, and diet hold major stakes and dictates a lot too.

More on healthy living – Smoking is responsible for 80% of all lung cancer deaths and 30% of all cancer-related deaths.

As healthy living goes, it doesn’t mean you are 100% certain not to get breast cancer or any kind of cancer.

These behaviors only help to reduce the risks.

The most common form of cancer found in men is colorectal, lung, and prostate cancer.

In women, breast, colorectal, and lung cancer are the most common.

Colorectal cancer might sound a bit foreign, so here are other names people call it – bowel cancer, colon cancer, or rectal cancer.

Cancer, behind heart diseases, is the second leading cause of death worldwide.

Cancer is the cause of 1 in 6 deaths on our planet.

And about 80% of those deaths occur in low and middle-income countries.

According to the International Agency for Research on Cancer, Ultra-violent (UV) tanning devices are in Group 1 of carcinogens. Other cancers causing agents in group 1 include processed meat, cigarette, plutonium, and asbestos. See more here.

Breast Cancer Fact

Of the common types of cancer, Breast cancer is the most common among women.

There is a 5% to 10% probability that cancer will develop in the left breast than the right. A lot of studies have confirmed this.

There is a high probability that people who have right-sided breast cancer, have a relative with breast cancer.

However, this does not necessarily mean, people whose family have a history of breast cancer will get it. Most people with breast cancer have no relation with breast cancer.

You’ve probably read or heard someone mention that wearing a bra can cause cancer, I am pleased to tell you, there is no truth in this statement. This study in 2014 showed records of about 1500 women who regularly wear a bra and proved there is no link between the disease and bra-wearing.

Another popular misconception is that carrying a cell phone in a bra causes breast cancer. Although cell phone manufacturers warn that we keep our phones away from the body as much as possible, there has been no proof of cell phones causing cancer. There are other health risk associated with the use of mobile phones though.

It is general knowledge that lumps found in the breast during a self-examination help in the early detection of cancer. This is another cancer fact that is not 100% accurate. At the early stage of breast cancer, lumps are not always present, the best way is to do regular screening with mammography.

Lastly on breast cancer facts, breast cancer is generally associated with women but men are not immune to it. Its true men don’t have breasts but they do have breast tissues. Read more on breast cancer in men.

Lung Cancer

Let’s start with one cancer fact that smokers will find more interesting if not scary.

Smoking is the primary cause of Lung cancer, it is responsible for about 90% of lung cancer-related cases.

In the United States, lung cancer is the leading cause of cancer-related deaths. It’s estimated that about 200,000 lung cancer cases are diagnosed each year, with about 75% losing the fight.

Lung cancer kills more people than prostate, breast, and colon cancer put together.

Asbestos is a confirmed carcinogen, this simply means asbestos helps in the formation of cancer. 

We are exposed to the asbestos fibers through breathing and when this is prolonged, it can cause lung cancer.

Of all ethnic and racial groups, African Americans are the most prone to develop lung cancer.

lung cancer facts about african american
Facts on African-American Men and Lung Cancer (Image Credit: CDC)


Prostate Cancer Fact

One out of every nine men will be diagnosed with prostate cancer.

On average, this type of cancer is diagnosed in men at age 66.

But African-American men stand a higher risk, this is not connected to genetics though; Studies have revealed societal factors and access to quality health care as the major reason behind this.

In men, prostate cancer is the second leading cause of cancer-related death.

But it’s not one with a high mortality rate, most men diagnosed with the disease will survive it.

Unlike other types of cancer, diet, smoking, and sexually transmitted infections are not linked (at least yet) to prostate cancer.

However, one study concluded that men with higher BMI stand a higher risk of developing advanced prostate cancer or one that is very fatal.

Dairy products have also been linked with this type of cancer.

Although there are researchers who don’t agree with this study, it is claimed that high consumption of milk and any form of product made from milk such as ice cream, yogurt, butter, cheese, etc increases the risk.

MUST-READWhat Food Causes Cancer? 13 Food You Should Avoid

Skin Cancer Fact

For the light-skinned folks, I am sorry to tell you but you stand a higher risk of skin cancer than the black person. People who have red or blond hair are also at a high risk of skin cancer.

In the United States, more than 2 people die of skin cancer-related death every hour.

If you have five or more sunburns, you double the risk of melanoma, a serious skin cancer that forms in cells known as melanocytes.

But if melanoma is detected early, the 5-years survival is 99%.

The info-graphics below courtesy the British tells more about Skin Cancer facts.

skin cancer infographics
Skin Cancer Facts (Image Credit:

Colon Cancer

Colon cancer, also known as colorectal cancer, or bowel cancer is the second leading cause of cancer-related death in the US.

Estimated at 50,000 death annually, this cancer kills an average of 140 people daily in the United States.

Colon cancer affects all gender, races, and ethnicities. Although it may appear earlier in men, its risk increases with age and there is an increased risk among African-Americans.

Colon cancer syndromes are inherited, thus leaving people whose relative had a case of colon cancer standing a two to five times more risk of having cancer.

The signs and symptoms of colon cancer, although subtle are weakness, fatigue, abdominal pain, rectal bleeding, and weight loss.

People with the colon cancer and/or conditions that can lead to it most times feel perfectly normal, therefore, it is advised to have a screening test especially when you’re over 50.


It is a fact – cancer is a serious threat to human existence and the only way to change this is by paying more attention.

Healthy living (diets and exercises), and early screening test are two of the easiest ways to prevent/curb any form of cancer.

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To your cancer free existence!

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