On Wednesday (July 4), Bollywood actress Sonali Bendre left the film world in shock when she revealed that she has high-grade cancer and is undergoing treatment in the United States of America.

In a Tweet, Sonali announced that she was taking her cancer battle “head on”. Here is the actress’ emotional Tweet to her two lakhs plus followers.

As thousands of mails and messages kept pouring in from fans asking Sonali to stay strong, people are also busy searching for what “high-grade cancer” meant.

There are different stages of cancer and it is also measured in grades. The medication or the treatment for cancer depends on the grade and stage of the cancer the person concerned is in. Let us understand what are the grades and stages of cancer.

Grades of Cancer

The grades of cancer are decided based on how the cell looks under a microscope. if the grading is lower, it means the cancer cells are growing slowly, and if the grades are high then it needs immediate check and treatment.

Cancer grades have been divided into three sectors.

In Grade 1, the cancer cells cannot be identified and they look just like normal cells.

In Grade 2 too the cancer cells look very much like the normal cells but grow much faster.

In Grade 3 cancer cells look abnormal and spread to other organs rapidly, need immediate care.

Stages of Cancer

The size of the tumour decides the stage of the cancer. There are four stages of cancer.

The first stage is known as stage 0, which indicates that cancer has just started but has not spread anywhere else. Sometimes it cannot even be identified.

The second stage is when cancer is identifiable but is still small and has not spread.

In the third stage it has grown and most likely has spread to the surrounding  tissues or lymph nodes.

The fourth stage is when the grown cancer has spread to at least one other body organ. This is also known as secondary or metastatic cancer.