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Cancer: Myths and Facts


Cancer is one of the harshest diseases that a person can contract. It is extremely difficult to treat, and can take a toll on the psyche of both the sufferer and their loved ones. Here we dissolve a few myths about cancer, because forewarned is always forearmed.

Myth 1: We don’t need to talk about cancer

Truth: Whilst cancer can be a difficult topic to address, particularly in some cultures and settings, dealing with the disease openly can improve outcomes at an individual, community and policy level. Investing in prevention and early detection of cancer is cheaper than dealing with the consequences.

Myth 2: There are no signs or symptoms of cancer

Truth: For many cancers, there are warning signs and symptoms and the benefits of early detection are indisputable Early detection is multifaceted. Strategies that raise awareness about cancer and the importance of seeking care when symptoms are present,  along with interventions for early diagnosis have the greatest chance of improving cancer outcomes.

Myth 3: There is nothing I can do about cancer

Truth: There is a lot that can be done at an individual, community and policy level, and with the right strategies, a third of the most common cancers can be prevented. The conditions in which people live and work, and their lifestyles, influence their health and quality of life.

Avoiding tobacco, maintaining a healthy body weight, eating right and getting enough exercise, and getting appropriate cancer screening tests can all make a significant difference.

Myth 4: I don’t have the right to cancer care

Truth: All people have the right to access proven and effective cancer treatments and services on equal terms, and without suffering hardship as a consequence.


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Published on:19 Feb, 2014

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