What is Cancer?


Young junior advocateYou might be wondering: What is cancer? 

Cancer is a disease.

All living things, including people, are made up of billions of tiny cells. A person gets cancer when some of their cells become unhealthy, and those unhealthy cells keep growing and multiplying. These unhealthy cells take up space that should be filled by healthy cells. 

As a kid, there is nothing you can do to cause someone to get cancer and you can't catch it from someone like a cold. It is something their own bodies create. But, we can help people when they get sick.

How do people with cancer get better?

A person with cancer gets special medicine from their doctor that helps them fight the unhealthy cells. The sooner they start taking this medicine, the better their chances for beating the cancer. Treating cancer takes a while, and the person might feel more tired or sick than usual while they get the medicine. Norah and MaggieYou might know someone in your family or neighborhood who has had cancer. 

How does ACS CAN fight cancer?

Cures and treatments for cancer are found by scientists who work for years researching new medicines that can help cancer patients. Your lawmakers decide how much money will be spent to find those new medicines. That is why we need volunteers and our Junior Cancer Fighters – so they can ask lawmakers to keep paying for the lifesaving research that helps find new cures for cancer.

We also pass laws to get people to never start smoking or vaping, or to stop doing it forever. Volunteers like you helped pass laws so people can’t smoke when you’re inside a restaurant.  And, to help people who do get sick and need to see their doctor, we pass laws to make it easier for them to go, like making it cost less money.

Return to the Junior Cancer Fighter start page

Your Support CAN fight Cancer