Flexi Says: There are many possible underlying causes of the DNA damage that leads to cancer, so cancer has many risk factors. DNA damage can be inherited from parents or result spontaneously from environmental exposures to carcinogens. Environmental risk factors include radon, UV light, air pollution, and behaviors such as smoking, unhealthy diet, and lack of exercise. Early diagnosis and treatment are the keys to curing cancer, although not all cancers are curable. Cancers may be detected early through routine screening (e.g., by mammograms) or by patients or health care providers noticing early warning signs, such as unusual bleeding or a nagging cough. A definitive diagnosis of cancer requires a biopsy, in which a tissue sample from the patient is examined microscopically. A biopsy may also reveal the type of cancer (e.g., carcinoma or sarcoma) and its stage (degree of severity, such as whether it has spread). Many types of treatments for cancer exist, including surgery, chemotherapy, radiation therapy, and immunotherapy. The first three types of treatment directly target cancer cells, while the last type of treatment is directed at helping the immune system fight cancer. Many other diagnoses have a worse prognosis than most cases of cancer, but cancer usually causes greater fear and dread. This is due to widespread misconceptions about cancer and the stigma associated with cancer.