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Posted: August 12, 2014 10:00 p.m.

11 little-known facts about cancer

Despite the prevalence of cancer, some information about this potentially deadly disease is not widely known. The following are some facts about cancer that may surprise you.

1. Cancer is officially known as “malignant neoplasm.”

2. Married people or those in steady relationships are more likely to survive cancer, which may be linked to couples’ increased concern and awareness of each other’s conditions and their push for cancer screenings.

3. Researchers believe that more than half of all cancers and cancer deaths are potentially preventable.

4. Most cancers develop through a combination of environmental factors and heredity.

5. Ovarian cancer, colon cancer and lung cancer are typically asymptomatic until they spread elsewhere in the body. That is why routine screenings for these diseases are so vital.

6. Those who sleep fewer than six hours a night are more likely to develop colon cancer than those who sleep more.

7. Despite what is known about protecting oneself from the sun, skin cancer is still the most often diagnosed type of cancer, and rates continue to steadily increase.

8. The highest rate of people diagnosed with melanoma, the most deadly form of skin cancer, are white men over the age of 50.

9. Men with a family history of breast cancer are at a higher risk for prostate cancer.

10. The left breast is statistically more prone to developing cancer than the right breast. Unfortunately, doctors and scientists are unsure why.

11. Women of Ashkenazi Jewish descent are significantly more likely to carry breast cancer genes than the general population.

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