World Cancer Day is organised globally, every year on 4th February. On this day, various programs and initiatives are rolled out with a view to expand the awareness in the general population, about various types of cancer, its tremendous impact on the patient, family, community and the nation as a whole and educate them about how to deal with this menace…
World cancer day 2022 marks the first year of a new three year campaign centred on the theme ‘Close the Care Gap’. This is to emphasize about lack of equity in cancer care, the barriers encountered, and how we all together, can help each other to break these barriers and provide cancer care for all.
According to Dr M Srinivas Reddy, Senior Consultant Surgical Oncologist at American Institute of Oncology – Kamineni Hospitals, Hyderabad, “The purpose of organizing health days such as World Cancer Day is to raise awareness in the general population and encourage them to come forward for treatment at an early stage. Tobacco, alcohol, improper dietary habits, lack of physical activity, environmental pollution, all can lead to increased risk of cancer. On the occasion of World Cancer Day, we hope to raise awareness about the importance of screening and early diagnosis of cancer which is crucial for treating cancer successfully. Eating a balanced diet rich in essential nutrients, fresh fruits and vegetables with abundant anti-oxidants, avoiding tobacco, alcohol and processed foods and some mode of physical activity, helps one to lower the risk for cancer.
Dr M Srinivas Reddy, further added, that, mortality in cancer patients in India is high due to delayed diagnosis, advanced stage at presentation and treatment non-compliance due to socio-economic factors/ fear.
Cancer screening tests detect disease at an early stage and facilitate curative treatment. Pap smear for cervix cancer, mammography for breast cancer, simple oral cavity visual screening and endoscopy/ colonoscopy for GI cancers help in detecting cancers early.
Some cancers can be prevented with interventions like HPV vaccination for ca cervix, Hepatitis B vaccination, and tobacco control programmes
The global Cancer burden will increase approximately by over 60% in the next 2 decades and up to 30 million new cancer cases may be seen by 2040.
How can we tackle this increasing burden?
It can be possible only by generating awareness in the general population, adopting a healthy lifestyle, proper Screening, early and timely diagnosis with comprehensive cancer treatment
It is the responsibility of every one of us to join hands in this fight against this dreadful disease.