Understanding

Cancer is not a single disease with a single type of treatment. There are more than 200 different types of cancer, each with its own name and treatment. This section provides an overview of what cancer is.

  • What is cancer?

    There are more than 200 different types of cancer. Each type has its own name and treatment.

  • Cancer and cell types

    Cancers are grouped into types. Types of cancer often behave and respond to treatments in different ways.

  • Signs and symptoms of cancer

    It’s important to know the common signs and symptoms of cancer.

  • How cancers are diagnosed

    If you are worried about any symptoms or changes to your body, you should visit your GP.

  • How is cancer treated?

    There are many types of cancer treatment. Depending on the cancer type, you may have one treatment or a combination.

  • Why do cancers come back?

    Sometimes, tiny cancer cells are left behind after cancer treatment. These can divide and grow to form a cancer.

An animated image of cells forming a tumour.

What is cancer?

Watch our animation about how cancer starts in our cells.

About our cancer information videos

What is cancer?

Watch our animation about how cancer starts in our cells.

About our cancer information videos