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Austin, TX
A 21-year-old female asked:

how do people get cancer?

2 doctor answers2 doctors weighed in
Dr. Jefferson Chen
Neurosurgery 34 years experience
Multifactorial: It is believed that cancer comes about when the normal growth patterns of cells becomes abberant and there is thus rapid proliferation of the cells. This displaces the normal tissues. What triggers this uncontrolled growth is unknown. There are numerous associations that have been clearly shown to predispose one to cancer. For example, smoking, exposure to radiation, exposure to certain chemicals.
Dr. Michael Fisher
Dermatology 32 years experience
Cancer Causes: Doctors often cannot explain why one person develops cancer and another does not. But research shows that certain risk factors increase the chance that a person will develop cancer. These are the most common risk factors for cancer: growing older, tobacco, sunlight, ionizing radiation, certain chemicals and other substances, some viruses and bacteria, certain hormones, family history of cancer, .

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Ann Arbor, MI
A 22-year-old male asked:

What makes people get certain types of cancer?

2 doctor answers4 doctors weighed in
Dr. LUIS IRIZARRY
A Verified Doctoranswered
A US doctor answeredLearn more
Cancer risk: Family clustering, genetic predisposition. It depends on the cancer: lung-throat-oral-prostate-bladdre= smoking. Radiation exposure (some thyroid cancer), not having babies or old age whe giving birth may increase risk of ovarian cancer, male (testicular cancer), female breast ca.. It is a complex question to answer. Is better to see docotor and do a evaluation in order to stratify risk factor.
Dr. Yash Khanna
Dr. Yash Khanna commented
Family Medicine 57 years experience
Some cancer are caused due to no control on it,like strong family history,past unknown exposure to carcinogens like asbestus,certain chemicals,certain drugs,old age like Prostate ca,radiation exposure.Others are slf inflicted like smoking,sun exposure,aids,tobaco chewing,all these cancers are preventable and people need to be educated about it.
Apr 3, 2012
A 28-year-old female asked:

Can people get cancer from hickies?

2 doctor answers3 doctors weighed in
Dr. Ahmad M Hadied
Orthopedic Surgery 49 years experience
I do not believe so: Hickies are just a bruise of the skin, that should not cause cancer.
A 42-year-old member asked:

Am i more likely to get cancer than other people?

1 doctor answer2 doctors weighed in
Dr. Ed Friedlander
Pathology 44 years experience
Do you smoke?: This is the overriding factor that will make you more likely to get cancer than the next person. Other factors you can control are sun exposure and hpv; if diet is actually a risk, scientists have had much more difficulty demonstrating it. A few genetic cancer syndromes are known; your physician can advise you. The key is early detection no matter what you risk to save your life.
United Kingdom
A 17-year-old male asked:

Why don't they know what causes people to get cancer ?

1 doctor answer1 doctor weighed in
Dr. Elizabeth Wallen
Pediatrics 35 years experience
Its complicated.: Cancer is not just one thing. Cancer is hundreds of different diseases. Not just one. We know there are different triggers, different behaviors that place you at risk, there are different genes that increase the likelihood of cancer...we know LOTS of different things about LOTS of different cancers. But we don't know the one thing that is common to all cancers so that they can be prevented.
A 35-year-old member asked:

Why are some people more likely to get cancer than others?

1 doctor answer3 doctors weighed in
Dr. Steven Vasilev
Gynecologic Oncology 37 years experience
Genes vs environment: Some of us have better genetic protection than others. A few cancers are purely bad luck because you inherit specific genes. The majority are related to your environment and lifestyle/diet choices and a balance of "good" cancer suppressor genes and "bad" promoter genes. Some folks make better lifestyle/diet choices than others and some have more suppressor genes. Read more about "epigenetics".

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Last updated Apr 7, 2015
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