Types Of Cancer

Please note that this list of different types of cancers is not exhaustive, please see attached link A-Z of different types of cancers.
CANCER TYPE AND DESCRIPTIONMain SymptomsScreeningHigh Risk Groups
Breast Cancer

Cancer begins when healthy cells in the breast change and grow out of control, forming a mass or sheet of cells called a tumour. A tumour can be cancerous or benign. A cancerous tumour can grow and spread to other parts of the body. A benign tumour means the tumour can grow but has not spread.
Some people do not have any signs or symptoms when they are first diagnosed.

A lump that feels like a hard knot thickening in the breast or under the arm.

Change in the shape or size of the breast.

Nipple discharge that occurs suddenly, is bloody, or occurs in only one breast.

Physical changes, such as a nipple turned inward, or a sore located in the nipple area.

Skin irritation or changes, such as puckering, dimpling, scaliness or new creases. A warm, red, swollen breast with or without a rash with dimpling resembling the skin of an orange, called “peau d’orange.”

Pain in the breast, particularly breast pain that does not go away.

Mammography – an x-ray of the breast.

MRI scan

NHS Screening Programme invite all women from the age of 50 to 70 for screening every 3 years.
Women aged 47- 70 years old.
Prostate Cancer

This cancer starts in the prostate gland. The prostate gland is found at the base of the bladder and is about the size of a walnut but gets bigger as men get older.

The prostate gland is part of the male reproductive system. It is the most common cancer in men in the UK.

The prostate surrounds the first part of the tube that carries urine from the bladder to the penis. This tube is called the urethra and also carries semen, which is fluid containing sperm.

Early stages – no symptoms usually caused.

Cancer needs to be big enough to press on the tube to cause symptoms.

If prostate cancer has already spread to different parts of the body (advanced or metastatic cancer) it can cause; back or bone pain that does not go away with rest, tiredness and weight loss for no reason.

More common in Black males.

A close relative (bother, father) who has prostate cancer.

Inherited genes. Risk increases as men get older.

Lung Cancer

Cancer that forms in the tissues of the lung, usually in the cells lining air passages.

Cancer that starts in the lung is called primary lung cancer and cancer that spreads to your lungs from somewhere else in your body is called secondary lung cancer.

There are 2 types of Primary lung cancer:

Small cell lung cancer – caused by smoking and tends to spread quite early on.

Non-small cell lung cancer – tumours found on the lining and surface of the airways.

Cough that doesn’t go away.

A change in a cough you have had for a long time.

Being short of breath.

Coughing up blood.

Feeling very tired.

Lung health checks – pilot scheme programme since 2019.

Lung assessments.

CT scan – A test that uses x-rays and a computer to create detailed pictures of the inside of your body, taking pictures from different angles.

Early diagnosis means that treatment is more likely to work.

Risks – the lungs are very sensitive, and each CT scan exposes you to small amounts of radiation with frequent scans causing lung damage, the tests don’t always pick up lung cancer.

Risk higher in those aged between 55-74 years old.

Cigarette smoking.

Use of tobacco (pipes or cigars).

Breathing second-hand smoke from others.

Being exposed to substances such as asbestos or radon.

Having a family history of lung cancer.

Bowel Cancer

Cancer that starts in the large bowel (colon) and back passage (rectum) also known as colorectal cancer.

Bowel cancer can spread to other parts of the body through the lymphatic system or through the bloodstream.
Consult GP if any of the symptoms below persist for 3 weeks or more:

Bleeding from the back passage.

Blood in your poo without other symptoms of piles.

Abdominal pain, discomfort or bloating always brought on by eating.

Change in your normal bowel habits.

NHS bowel cancer screening available to anyone aged 60-74 years old who is registered with a GP.

Home test kit called a faecal immunochemical test (FIT) which tests a sample of poo for tiny amounts of blood. If test finds anything unusual, referral made to hospital to have further tests to confirm or rule out cancer.

Screening programme has also started since 2021 to include 58-60 year olds and is being rolled out over 4 years.

Age – Over 75’s

Family history – risk increased if you have a first degree relative (parent, sibling or child) diagnosed with bowel cancer.

Lifestyle factors Diet – eating too much red and processed meat, eating too little fibre (boost fibre intake by choosing wholegrain versions of food).


Lack of physical activity.

Smoking tobacco.

Drinking alcohol.

Other medical conditions which increase risk of bowel cancer:

Ulcerative colitis and Crohn’s disease.

Previous cancer of the bowel.




Radiation Infections. (H. Pylori)

Cervical Cancer

Cancer found anywhere in the cervix, which is the opening between the vagina and the womb. This is when abnormal cells in the lining of the cervix grow in an uncontrolled way.
Vaginal bleeding that’s unusual for you.

Pain during sex.

Changes in vaginal discharge.

Lower back pain
NHS cervical screening programme invites women aged between 25 and 64 for cervical screening and aims to pick up changes early that could develop into cervical cancer.

Invite to screening every 3 years if you are aged between 25-49.

Invite to screening every 5 years from age 50.

Cervical cancer is most frequently diagnosed in women aged 35 to 44, rarely developing in women under 20.

Coming into contact with The Human papilloma virus (HPV), which is usually passed on through close skin to skin contact usually during sexual activity.

HIV or Aids increases risk of developing cervical cancer.

Having sexually transmitted infections (STI) alongside HPV.

Smoking tobacco.

Taking the contraceptive pill for more than 5 years.

Increased risk if your mother, sister or daughter has had cervical cancer.

If you have had previous cancers of the vagina, vulva, kidney or urinary tract.

Safeena - Muslim Cancer Support Network

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