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The body is made up of hundreds of millions of living cells. Normal body cells grow, divide, and die in an orderly fashion. Cancer begins when cells in a part of the body start to grow out of control. There are many kinds of cancer, but they all start because of out-of-control growth of abnormal cells.

No matter where a cancer may spread, it is always named for the place where it started. For example, breast cancer that has spread to the liver is still called breast cancer, not liver cancer. Also, different types of cancer can behave very differently--although they're both called cancer, lung cancer and skin cancer are very different diseases. They grow at different rates and respond to different treatments. What's important is finding out the best treatment options for you and your particular type of cancer.

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