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Types of Cancer

Cancers are classified according to the location and organ which is affected - the type of cell that the tumour cells resemble, the origin of the tumour and what type of cancer it is. The types of cancer include:-

  1. Carcinoma: Cancers derived from epithelial cells. It includes many common cancers developing in the breast, prostate, lung, liver, pancreas and colon.
  2. Lymphoma and leukemia: These two classes of cancer arise from blood-forming cells that leave the marrow and mature in the lymph nodes or blood. Leukemia (blood cancer) is the most common type of cancer found in children.
  3. Sarcoma: Cancers arising from connective tissue (i.e. bone, cartilage, fat, nerve), each of which develops from cells originating in mesenchymal cells outside the bone marrow.
  4. Germ cell tumours: Cancers derived from reproductive(sperm and ovum forming) cells, most often occurring in the testis or ovary.
  5. Blastomas: Cancers derived from immature "precursor" cells or embryonic tissue. Blastomas are more common in children than in adults.

The majority of cancers seen in men occur in the mouth /throat, lung, and gut while in women, the common cancers are those of the uterus, cervix or breast.