New Delhi [India], February 4 (ANI): India will see a surge in cancer cases in the coming years which can go upto 20 lakhs per year by 2026, as estimate by AIIMS based on the data provided by the Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR).
Dr S V S Deo, Professor of Surgical Oncology at AIIMS Delhi, while speaking to ANI stated that India is witnessing a surge in the number of cancer patients.
He further stated, "13-14 lakh people are getting affected by the deadly disease each year and the figure could go in excess of 20 lakhs by the year 2026."
The AIIMS doctor mentioned that the theme for this year's World Cancer Day, being celebrated on February 4, is 'closing the gap'. He explained that the theme has been chosen keeping in mind the lack of awareness about the myths surrounding cancer and the need to educate people regarding the disease.
Deo stated that people have the misconception about Cancer being incurable which is completely dubious. He explained that the disease can be cured if diagnosed on time and this is why an awareness campaign is being run to impart this information to the public.
Explaining the details of the campaign, he said, "different activities have been planned to raise awareness. Doctors will be interacting with people and rallies will be taken out to educate and disseminate information."
Sharing tips on how to keep cancer at bay, he said that people need to realise the importance of leading a healthy lifestyle and keeping a clean healthy diet. He further explained that processed and packed food items should be avoided as it enhances the risk of cancer.
He further said that smoking and consumption of alcohol account for 30 per cent of total cancer cases.
Speaking on the rise in gallbladder-related illness, Deo said, "Cases of gallbladder cases in women has been on the rise especially in the north-eastern parts of the country and settlements beside rivers."
The doctor said that North-East accounted for the most number of cancer cases related to stomach, gallbladder, neck, head, food pipe etc pertaining to their unhealthy lifestyle and consumption of unhygienic water and food.
Sushma Bhatnagar, the head of National Cancer Institute of India told ANI, "Cases of genetic cancer in children below the age of 16 has increased in the country." She also stated that a major chunk of cancer cases are a result of air pollution, water pollution and an unhealthy lifestyle.
Highlighting the spike in air pollution, the doctor said, "It has caused an increase in the cases of cervical cancer. Delhi NCR witnessed 22000 cases of cancer last year of which 50 per cent of cases were treated at the National Cancer Institute, AIIMS."
She stated that earlier the majority of cases were recorded in people above the age of 50, but now the younger generation has fallen prey to the deadly disease.
The doctor also informed that joint research with IITs is being carried on to develop technology that will help in the treatment of cancer and the negative after-effects of the disease. (ANI)