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Cancer is a group of diseases characterized by the uncontrolled growth and spread of abnormal cells. If the spread is not con­trolled, it can result in death. Cancer is caused by external factors, such as tobacco, infectious organisms, and an unhealthy diet, and internal factors, such as inherited genetic mutations, hormones, and immune conditions. These factors may act together or in sequence to cause cancer. Ten or more years often pass between exposure to external factors and detectable cancer. Treatments include surgery, radiation, chemotherapy, hormone therapy, immune therapy, and targeted therapy (drugs that spe­cifically interfere with cancer cell growth).