While cancer facts are easily obtainable on the internet and from your doctor, if you or someone you care about is diagnosed with cancer, panic sets in. The good news is that cancer is no longer a death sentence. Treatments for the disease are improving with time and research, and one day the expression ‘finding a cure for cancer’ may cease to be synonymous with doing something almost impossible. So what is cancer? One of the best known cancer facts is that it has something to do with tumours and the word tumour is often used interchangeably with cancer. However, it is possibly for a tumour to be benign and therefore pose no threat to the individual concerned. (A benign tumour is one which does not invade other cells or parts of the body.) A malignant tumour, on the other hand shows uncontrolled growth, invades and possibly destroys nearby tissues and may show metastasis as well (i.e. spreading to another part of the body). Amongst the little known cancer facts is the fact that cancer may not even be painful, depending on its location. Another of the cancer facts that could surprise you is that it can even be caused by some types of poisonous mushrooms and a toxin that can grow on peanut plants. (Don’t let that put you off peanuts, though, peanuts are harmless.) Other encouraging cancer facts include the fact that the number of deaths to cancer is actually down from previous years. This could be because people today are more health conscious and are cutting down on unhealthy activities like smoking. They are also careful about overexposure to UV rays which can cause cancer. More good news in cancer facts is that there’s more and more awareness of the disease and organisations worldwide are teaming up to fight cancer. While cancer is a notoriously difficult disease to treat, with patients sometimes needing three or more doctors (specialists in different areas), who may not always agree with each other, patients should not give up. Positive thinking and will power evidently work as well with cancer as they do with other illnesses, with patients making apparently miraculous recoveries because of their will to survive. Statistical cancer facts may not be available to prove this, but faith in their religion can help a patient through the tough times that come with having cancer. Most importantly, never ever lose hope.