Cancer is a group of many different diseases distinguished by the abnormal and uncontrolled growth of cells, according to the University of Southern California. While both children and adults can get cancer, the majority of cancers develop in those older than 65.
Cancer is among the most common causes of death and morbidity worldwide, reports the World Health Organization. In 2012, around 8.2 million deaths were related to cancer, and roughly 14 million new diagnoses were given. During that same year, the five most common areas where cancer was diagnosed in men were the prostate, stomach, lungs, colorectum and liver. Among women, the breast, lungs, stomach, colorectum and cervix were the five most common areas where cancer was diagnosed.
About one-third of cancer-related deaths are due to dietary and behavioral risks, such as low fruit and vegetable consumption, high body mass index, alcohol use, lack of exercise and tobacco use, according to the World Health Organization. Tobacco use is reportedly the highest risk factor for cancer, causing about 20 percent of international cancer deaths in general and 70 percent of international lung cancer deaths. More than half of the world's new yearly diagnoses of cancer occur in Asia, Africa and South and Central America. These areas represent around 70 percent of cancer-related deaths worldwide.