Benign or Malignant

Tumors can be benign or malignant.

Benign Tumors

  • Benign tumors are normal cells that divide and grow too much, but do not interfere with the function of normal cells around them.
  • They do not have the ability to move from where they originated.
  • They are not cancerous and usually do not become cancerous, no matter how large they grow.
  • Benign tumors frequently stop growing once they reach a certain size and do not invade other tissues.
  • When benign tumors are removed, they usually do not grow back (recur) and do not spread to distant parts of the body (metastasize).

Malignant Tumors

  • Malignant tumors are overgrowths of abnormal cells (cancer) that divide without control and order.
  • They do not stop growing, even when they come into contact with nearby cells.
  • As malignant tumors grow, they squeeze surrounding healthy tissue and prevent their normal function.
  • They also release certain signals that cause the creation of new blood vessels to feed the tumor.

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