Cancer is a major burden of disease Worldwide. Today it is the second leading
cause of death globally. According to world Health Organization (WHO) 1 in 6
deaths across the world is due to cancer. India has an estimated 1.16 million
new cancer cases in the year 2018. Also around one-third of deaths from cancer
are due to the five leading behavior and dietary risks including high body mass
index, low fruit and vegetable intake, lack of physical activity, tobacco use,
and alcohol consumption.
The most important risk factor for cancer is tobacco
and is responsible for approximately 22% of cancer deaths. World Health
Organization (WHO) warns 1 in every 10 Indians will develop during their
lifetime and 1 in every 15 Indians will die of the disease. According to the
International Agency for Research on cancer (IARC) estimates on the global
cancer burden, indicating that it has risen to 19.3 million cases and 10 million
cancer deaths in 2020. Breast Cancer(2.26 million), Lung Cancer(2.21 million),
Colon and Rectum Cancer(1.93 million), Prostate(1.41 million), Stomach
Cancer(1.09 million) cases are the most common types of cancer in 2020.
What Causes Cancer?
There are multiple factors that increase the risk of cancer. It is a disease of
the cells in the body. The main reason is the lack of preventive strategies,
lack of awareness and unhygienic lifestyle also plays a very important role
like tobacco chewing and alcohol consumption. If 10 million people die of cancer
every year globally then 2.5 million die of this smoking and tobacco use.
other factors like:
Aging, Genes, Environmental factors, Sun Exposure, Harmful
Radiation, Viruses are also responsible for cancer widening.
It is the
interaction of many factors together. Cancer is a disease caused when cells
divide uncontrollably as a result of errors in the DNA or RNA known as mutation
,which affect protein function, these abnormal growths are called Tumors. Old
cells do not die and instead grow out of control forming new abnormal cells
these extra cells may form a mass of tissue called a Tumor.
Tumor cells have
mutations which breakdown the self defense allowing it to develop unchecked
because tumors arise from your body's own cells. Cancer can grow and spread to
the rest of your body and surrounding the tissues undetected by your immune
system. Mutation are the underlying cause of cancer.
The National Cancer Registry Report 2020 released by the Indian Council of
Medical Research (ICMR) estimates the projected no. of cancer cases in India is
13.9 lakhs for the year 2020. Breast Cancer being the topmost with the
frightening no. of cases. The main factor that impact your possibility include
getting Older, No Breastfeeding, Overweight, Alcohol consumption, Early
menstruation /late menopause and other lifestyle habits.
Breast Cancer usually
begins either in your gland that make milk (called lobular carcinoma) or the
ducts that carry it to the nipple (called ductal carcinoma). It can grow larger
in your breast and spread to nearby lymph nodes or through your bloodstream to
other organs. The cancer may grow and invade tissue around your breast, such as
your chest wall. A change in breast shape, fluid coming from the nipple, a newly
inverted nipple, or a red or scaly patch of skins are the signs of Breast
Cancer. There are certain complementary therapies and medical treatments to help
control symptoms of Breast Cancer.
Early Detection is a better choice
Thousands of lives could be saved each year if people were more aware of the
signs and symptoms of cancer.
There are two components of early detection:
An Ounce of Prevention is worth a pound of Cure
- Early Diagnosis;
When identified early, cancer is more likely to respond to treatment and can result in a greater
probability of survival and less expensive treatment. We can target that cancer much more
specifically and that leads to better outcomes, a higher cure rate and less side effects. If we do
not make the diagnosis the cancer tends to spread via bloodstream to distant organs.
Screening programs should be done so that we can tap them on an early stage. It aims to identify
individuals with findings suggestive of a specific cancer or pre-cancer before they have developed
symptoms. screening programs are effective for some but not all cancer types and in general are far more complex and resource intensive than early diagnosis as they require special equipment. Examples of screening methods are;- (i) HPV testing for Cervical Cancer.
- The PAP cytology test for Cervical Cancer
- Mammography Screening for Breast Cancer in setting with strong or
relatively strong health
We need to have a preventive strategy and it also needs a very collaborative and
community approach so that we join hands with the Community, with the
individuals, with the various Organization. You can reduce your risk of getting
cancer by nurturing a healthy life.
Cancer risk can be reduced by:
- Not Chewing Tobacco and avoiding harmful use of Alcohol
- Doing Physical activity on a regular basis.
- Eating a healthy diet, including fruits and vegetables.
- Avoiding ultraviolet radiation (which primarily results from exposure to
the sun and artificial
- Get immunized (HPV and hepatitis vaccines).
- Know your family medical history and get regular cancer Screenings.