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Vital Signs

Cancer: 10 killer facts

  • Story Highlights
  • The majority of cancer cases are now found in developing countries
  • 72 per cent of all cancer deaths in 2007 occurred in poorer countries
  • By 2030, WHO estimates there will be 12 million cancer related deaths worldwide
  • A third of cancers can be cured if detected early and treated adequately
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CNN -- Cancer is one of the leading causes of death in the world, particularly in developing countries.

Tobacco is one of the largest causes of cancer in the world.

Tobacco use is one of the largest causes of cancer in the world.

In 2008 a report by the International Agency for Research on Cancer revealed that, until recently, cancer was considered a disease of westernized, industrialized countries.

Today the situation has changed dramatically, with the majority of the global cancer cases now found in the developing world.

However, myths and misconceptions about cancer still abound.

Below CNN's Vital Signs has compiled facts from the World Health Organization about this killer disease.

-- There are more than 100 types of cancers; any part of the body can be affected.

-- Cancer is a leading cause of death worldwide: In 2007, it accounted for 7.9 million deaths (around 13 per cent of all deaths) in 2007.

-- The five most common types of cancer that kill men worldwide are (in order of frequency): lung, stomach, liver, colorectal and esophagus.

-- While for women worldwide the five most common types of cancer are: breast, lung, stomach, colorectal and cervical.

-- About 72 per cent of all cancer deaths in 2007 occurred in low- and middle-income countries.

-- Deaths from cancer worldwide are projected to continue rising, with an estimated 12 million deaths in 2030.

-- The WHO estimates that 30 per cent of cancers can be prevented, mainly by not using tobacco, having a healthy diet and being physically active.

-- Tobacco use is the single largest preventable cause of cancer in the world.

-- A third of cancers could be cured if detected early and treated adequately.

-- A fifth of all cancers in the world are caused by a chronic infection, for example human papillomavirus (HPV) causes cervical cancer and hepatitis B virus (HBV) causes liver cancer.

Source: The World Health Organization

All About CancerBreast CancerWorld Health OrganizationLung Cancer

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