Cancer is a condition that can be defined based on its three most important characteristics, namely the unchecked division of a cell group, the invasion and consequent annihilation of adjacent tissue and cells as well as the metastasis or development in other sections of the organisms. These features constitute the factors that allow us to dissociate between a malign tumor and a benign one, the latter being self-limiting, non-invasive and non-metastatic.
Furthermore, it is necessary to point out that while the formation of tumors is proprietary to most forms of cancer, patients with leukemia and similar variants of the condition will not experience these growths. Let’s find out what the top false notions that pervade cancer today are.
1. There is only one form of cancer
The false notion most probably stems from slogans such as “Cure for cancer”, which leads people to believe that once a treatment is discovered, it is applicable for all forms of the condition. To put it simply, some consider that medical science has to discover a single, one size fits all miracle drug/procedure. However, the truth is that each individual variant of cancer manifests quite differently from the others, which means that the treatment has to be “custom fit”. In addition to that, while medical science has made important breakthroughs in treating certain forms of the condition such as breast cancer with almost 90% success rates, for others (esophageal cancer, lung cancer, pancreatic cancer, etc.) there is still a long way to go.
2. Cancer is an incurable diseases
This misconception is similar to the one above. Cancer, or more accurately the general concept of cancer, has no actual 100% treatment. However, there are effective treatments for several versions of cancer. Medical science defines a “cured” or “cancer free” patient as a person who has been able to eliminate the cancerous formation from his organism and for whom the tumor has not relapsed in 5 years. In other words, if you are familiar with the technical significance of the medical terms, you can understand why this generalization is completely false.
3. Cell phones constitute a factor in the development of cancer
The truth is that modern science cannot discredit this myth beyond the shadow of a doubt. However, the consensus in the medical community is that no correlation between cell phone radiation and the development of carcinoma tumors exists. Furthermore, the latest generations of smartphones are considerably safer compared to their predecessors and the technology behind them is constantly evolving. Moreover, conducting a study that could prove/disprove the link between cancer and cell phones is virtually impossible.
4. All lumps are of cancerous origins
The presence of a lump or abnormal tissue accumulation does not automatically represent a cancer sentence. Without denying the possibility of a malign tumor, chances are that it could also constitute a cyst or a benign/precancerous tumor. Cysts are either operable or absorbed by the organism in time, whereas the benign/precancerous tumors will have to be extirpated surgically. You won’t know for certain without undergoing a screening and/or a biopsy.
5. Artificial sweeteners are responsible for cancer
Back in the 70s, a research conducted on the effects of cyclamate on lab mice suggested that artificial sweeteners might constitute a responsible factor for cancer. However, later on it was discovered that the lab mice were fed an incredibly high quantity of cyclamate, more exactly 800 soda cans worth of it. Therefore, since no other study revealed enough data to suggest that moderate consumption of artificial sweeteners could have a negative impact on your health, the theory was dismissed.
6. Cancer can only be beaten by a positive attitude
Without denying the important role of a positive attitude in the fight against cancer, there is no way to eliminate the tumor without extensive and consistent medical attention. True enough, the body will react better to the cancer treatment and you have better chances to make a full recovery if you don’t fall prey to depression. However, western medicine provides the only proven and documented solution.
7. Invasive surgery could transport the cancer to a healthy body part
This was true in the old days, when the surgical interventions had an exploratory as well as curative purpose because effective screening technology was not yet developed. However, thanks to the technical innovations in the field of medicine, the surgeons are no longer forced to operate “blindly” and can accurately determine the presence, shape, dimensions and type of the tumor. Therefore, since invasive surgery is no longer “clumsy” in regards to the risk of moving the tumor to another body part is virtually nonexistent.
8. Breast cancer only appears in women
The data gathered by the American Cancer Institute indicates that approximately 2,000 cases of male patients suffering from breast cancer are discovered on an yearly basis. However, the propensity of women developing breast cancer is 100 times greater, because of the additional tissue in that area.
9. Cancer rates are rising worldwide
The false notion regarding the increased number of cancer cases stems from the misinterpretation of statistical data. To put it simply, some researchers forget to take into account the amplified longevity of the higher world population. Therefore, because they compare the number of cancer cases from earlier periods when globe’s population was considerably lower to the one of today, some researchers erroneously believe that the prevalence of cancer has increased. In fact, the risk of cancer is constantly dropping.
10. A successful cure for cancer exists, but it is withheld from the public
There are conspiracy theorists who claim that the government/corporations/medical community has already discovered an effective cure, but refuse to share it with the general public. However, they tend to forget about the Hippocratic Oath that every medical doctor swears by and which compels him to do everything in his power to save lives. Moreover, the concept that a certain pharmaceutical manufacturer has the cure to one of the deadliest diseases of the century but refuses to capitalize on it is simply absurd. On a side note, the research community might be very close to developing an effective treatment. A recent article published in a medical journal suggests a drug, which has been able to cure advanced cancers in dogs, is currently being tested.