India likely to see cancer cases per year by 2026: AIIMS

New Delhi: India will see a  surge in cancer cases in the  coming years which can go  up to 20 lakhs per year by  2026, as estimate by AIIMS based on the data  provided by the Indian Co u n c il o f Me d i c a l Research (ICMR). Dr SVS Deo, Professor of  Surgical Oncology at AIIMS De lhi, whil e speaking to News Agency  st a t ed tha t Indi a 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.” T h e A I I M S d o c t o r
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. Dr 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, Dr Deo said, “Cases of gallbladder cases in women  has been on the rise especially in the northeastern parts of the country  and settlements beside
rivers.” The doctor said that NorthEast accounted for the most  number of cancer cases r e l a t e d t o st o m a c h ,
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 News Agency,  “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 out to develop technology that will help in the treatment of cancer and the negative after-effects of the disease.

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