Fighting Cancer

By on March 07, 2019
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Fighting Cancer

Overcoming the dreaded disease is not impossible as early diagnosis drastically increases survival rates

Just the mention of cancer instills a sense of fear in people. We tend to associate cancer with painful chemotherapy, loss of hair and immunity, and eventually succumbing to the disease. In fact, we associate cancer with death.

The top two cancers reported in India are breast and cervical cancer; unfortunately both occur only in women.

Around 10 years ago, cervical cancer was most common among women. Now it is taken over by breast cancer. Doctors were under the impression that breast cancer occurred mostly among women belonging to the higher socio-economic strata, but then noticed that Tier II and III cities were also reporting a rise in breast cancer cases.

Interestingly, the overall number of cancer cases in India, or even Goa for that matter, has not increased or decreased significantly. Cancer typicaly increases by around 10 per cent. However, within the types of cancers, the numbers have shown a difference – for instance the number of cervical cancer cases has dropped, but breast cancer cases have risen. Similarly, stomach cancer cases have dropped but prostate cancer cases have risen.

Lifestyle changes have decreased the incidence of some types of cancers while they have increased some others.

The most important point to be noted here is that doctors are seeing younger patients suffering from cancer. In the US, cancer begins among women who are mostly nearing 50. In India, we see patients between the age groups of 30-50 years.

Doctors want younger patients to enjoy a cancer-free life. For someone who is 60-65 years old, even five years’ survival is like a boon. But for a patient in her 30s, that is not the case.

Read the full article in 'Viva Goa' magazine copy.

Viva Goa magazine is now on stands. Available at all major book stalls and supermarkets in Goa.

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