Cancer is one of the biggest killers in the UK, and over 2.5 million people are currently living with some form of the disease.
But as new treatments are developed and campaigns, such as Race for Life and Movemember, raise awareness of symptoms, the deaths caused by cancer have dropped. In the past decade alone there has been a 10 per cent decrease in death rates, BBC News reported.
And while cancers can be caused by genetics and environmental factors that are out of our control, 30 percent of cancers worldwide could be prevented by leading a healthy lifestyle and being immunised against viruses such as HPV and HBV, according to the World Health Organisation.
Below are the symptoms of the most common types of cancer in the UK.
One of the most serious forms of the disease, around 44,500 people are diagnosed with lung cancer each year. The chance of survival is 5 per cent, and around 35,000 people will die of the disease each year. However, 89 per cent of cases are preventable.
There are two forms of primary lung cancer: the term used to describe the disease when it has not spread to other parts of the body.
More than 80 per cent of cases are non-small-cell lung cancer, which fall into the categories of squamous cell carcinoma, adenocarcinoma or large-cell carcinoma. Each of these forms attack different areas of the lung.
Small-cell lung, or oat-cell, cancer is rarer, but is more aggressive than non-small-cell. The vast majority of patients with oat-cell cancer are smokers, according to Cancer Research UK.
Symptoms: Feeling breathless and having a persistent cough, as well as an aching or feeling pain when breathing or coughing are all symptoms of lung cancer. Coughing up blood or rust-coloured spit or phlegm, as well as repeatedly having infections such as bronchitis and pneumonia are signs, too.
Sudden and unexplained tiredness and weight loss can also be caused by the disease.
Public Health England in 2013 launched a campaign urging people not to ignore persistent coughs, as almost 24,000 people a year in England are diagnosed with the disease at the earliest stage when treatment is most likely to be successful.
Also known as colon or rectal cancer, bowel cancer affects around one in 20 people in the UK, with around 41,000 people diagnosed with it each year. Over 16,000 of those patients will die of the disease. It has a survival rate of 57 per cent, and can be prevented in 54 per cent of cases.
It is most common in the over 60s; those with a diet low in fibre and high in red and processed meat; the overweight; and those who lead a sedentary lifestyle. Drinking and smoking can also heighten the risk, as well as a family history of the condition.
Symptoms: Bowel cancer can be easily mistaken for other illnesses because the signs are common in many conditions.
Blood in your stools and pain in the abdomen can be caused by bowel cancer. Changes in bowel movements – such as constipation or diarrhea – that last for more than a few days are also linked to the disease.
But these are also common in people with haemorrhoids or those whose eating habits have changed, according to the NHS. In the latest stages, weight loss, pain when eating and bloating become evident.
Breast cancer is the most common type of cancer in the UK, but lung cancer is the deadliest according to Cancer Research UK. The majority of people who get breast cancer are women over the age of 65, however younger women and men can also develop the disease.
Each year, over 53,000 new cases of breast cancer are diagnosed, but it has a survival rate of 78 per cent, meaning it causes over 11,000 deaths annually. It can be prevented in 27 per cent of cases.
Symptoms: Many people know that breast cancer is signaled by unusual lumps and thickening in the breast, but campaigners have urged that are other warnings signs that are unknown.
The charity Breast Cancer Care is among organisations to urge the public to be wary of all the symptoms of the disease.
A change in the size, shape or skin on the breast; swelling in the armpit; and constant pain in the area can signal breast cancer.
However, the nipples can also be affected. Redness, a rash or discharge coming from the nipple are all signs of the disease.
While lumps in the breast generally aren’t cancerous, the NHS urges people to visit their GP if they notice anything unusual.
13 ways to help prevent cancer
13 ways to help prevent cancer
Stopping smoking. This notoriously difficult habit to break sees tar build-up in the lungs and DNA alteration and causes 15,558 cancer deaths a year
Avoiding the sun, and the melanoma that comes with overexposure to harmful UV rays, could help conscientious shade-lovers dodge being one of the 7,220 people who die from it
A diet that is low in red meat can help to prevent bowel cancer, according to the research - with 30 grams a day recommended for men, and 25 a day recommended for women
Foods high in fibre, meanwhile, can further make for healthier bowels. Processed foods in developed countries appear to be causing higher rates of colon cancer than diets in continents such as Africa, which have high bean and pulse intakes
Two servings of fruit and three servings of vegetables a day were given as the magic number for good diet in the research. Overall, diet causes only slightly fewer cancer deaths than sun exposure in Australia, at 7,000 a year
Obesity and being overweight, linked to poor diet and lack of exercise, causes 3,917 deaths by cancer a year on its own
Dying of a cancer caused by infection also comes in highly, linked to 3,421 cancer deaths a year. Infections such as human papilloma virus - which can cause cervical cancer in women - and hepatitis - can be prevented by vaccinations and having regular check-ups
Cutting back on drinks could reduce the risk of cancers caused by alcohol - such as liver cancer, bowel cancer, breast cancer and mouth cancer - that are leading to 3,208 deaths a year
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Sitting around and not getting the heart pumping - less than one hour's exercise a day - is directly leading to about 1,800 people having lower immune functions and higher hormone levels, among other factors, that cause cancers
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Hormone replacement therapy, which is used to relieve symptoms of the menopause in women, caused 539 deaths from (mainly breast) cancer in Australia last year. It did, however, prevent 52 cases of colorectal cancers
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Insufficient breastfeeding, bizarrely, makes the top 10. Breastfeeding for 12 months could prevent 235 cancer cases a year, said the research
Oral contraceptives, like the Pill, caused about 105 breast cancers and 52 cervical cancers - but it also prevented about 1,440 ovarian and uterine (womb) cases of cancer last year
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Taking aspirin also prevented 232 cases in the Queensland research of colorectal and oesophagal cancers - but as it can also cause strokes, is not yet recommended as a formal treatment against the risk of cancer
This form of cancer only affects men, because it is found in the satsuma-sized prostate gland located between the penis and the bladder. Over 47,000 new cases of prostate cancer are diagnosed each year. But it has a high survival rate of 84 per cent. Almost 11,000 people die of the disease each year. There are no clear ways of preventing prostate cancer, according to Cancer Research UK.
Symptoms: In the early stages, prostate cancer does not cause any symptoms for many years, meaning it is usually caught when it is developed.
The condition is usually picked up when the gland becomes so large that it affects the function of the urethra and makes passing urine more frequent, slower and weaker.
Blood in the urine and erectile dysfunction are also signs. If the cancer pushes against the spinal cord, weakness or numbness in the legs or feet and the loss of bladder and bowel control can also occur.
However, difficulty passing urine can also be a sign of a common condition called benign prostatic hyperplasia, where the inner part of the prostate continues to grow as men get older.
If you experience any of these symptoms and are concerned about your health, the NHS advises that you visit your GP.