When taking on cancer, you want time on your side. The potential for a better outcome is greater when cancer is detected early, before it has spread. With more awareness around the importance of routine cancer screening, more cancers cases can be diagnosed in earlier stages. But important work still remains to continue to improve care for early-stage disease.

Understanding the different stages of cancer

When cancer is diagnosed, doctors perform tests to understand how advanced it is and whether or not it’s spread from the original site to other areas in the body. This information, known as staging, can provide important insights into the odds for recurrence (the cancer coming back) and recovery, and help guide treatment decisions.