Benign Tumors

Benign Tumors

A benign tumor is not a malignant tumor, which is cancer. It does not invade nearby tissue or spread to other parts of the body the way cancer can. In most cases, the outlook with benign tumors is very good. But benign tumors can be serious if they press on vital structures such as blood vessels or nerves.

Can a benign tumor turn into cancer?
Benign: These are not cancerous. They either cannot spread or grow, or they do so very slowly. If a doctor removes them, they do not generally return. Premalignant: In these tumors, the cells are not yet cancerous, but they have the potential to become malignant.

Can a benign tumor kill you?
Most tumours of the bone are benign, which means they are not cancerous and will not kill you. Such tumours do not metastasize, i.e. they do not spread to other areas of the body. But they may still weaken the overall bone structure, and can lead to broken bones or cause other problems.

Why do benign tumors grow?
The exact cause of a benign tumor is often unknown. It develops when cells in the body divide and grow at an excessive rate. Typically, the body is able to balance cell growth and division. When old or damaged cells die, they are automatically replaced with new, healthy cells.

What disease causes benign tumors?
Symptoms. There are two types of neurofibromatosis. Type 1 (NF-1), also called von Recklinghausen’s disease, causes multiple benign (noncancerous) tumors of the nerves and skin.

Are benign tumors hard or soft?
They can feel firm or soft. Benign masses are more likely to be painful to the touch, such as with an abscess. Benign tumors also tend to grow more slowly, and many are smaller than 5 cm (2 inches) at their longest point. Sarcomas (cancerous growths) more often are painless.

Should I worry about a benign tumor?
Even though most benign tumors are harmless and can be left alone, it’s important they be monitored. And any tumor that is painful or growing requires a visit to the doctor.

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