“The top cancers that affect the Indian population are lung, breast, cervical, head and neck and colorectal cancer. Although reports show that the cancer burden in India has increased, this could be because there has been an increased effort from the government and the medical community to raise awareness on early detection of cancer and provide more avenues for cancer screening which means that cases that were earlier going undetected and untreated are now being discovered and recorded. A combination of environmental, genetic and lifestyle factors can lead to cancer, however the use of tobacco and tobacco products is one of the leading established causes of cancer in India.
Vaping, smoking, second-hand smoke, air pollution, chewing tobacco, are major factors responsible for lung and head and neck cancers in India. Breast cancer is the most common type of cancer detected in women in India and cervical cancer is the leading cause of death among women. Tackling cancer must be a two-way process – people must become more conscious of their lifestyle habits and choices, make good dietary choices. Simultaneously there must be consistent and large-scale efforts to encourage the prevention or early detection of cancer such as HPV vaccination or regular health check-ups, self-checking for lumps, avoiding harmful exposure to the sun and discouraging the sale and use of tobacco products.”
-Dr. Vijay Agarwal, Lead & Sr. Consultant – Medical Oncology & Haematology, Aster CMI Hospital
World Cancer Day marked on February 4 to raise international awareness of cancer and to encourage its prevention, detection, and treatment. UNESCO has announced ‘I Am and I Will’, as the theme and campaign for this year. It is an empowering call-to-action, representing the action taken on a personal level to eradicate the disease globally. The theme seeks to counter the negative attitude and fatalistic belief that nothing can be done about cancer, and instead promotes how our personal actions can be powerful and impactful. According to reports, an estimated 9.5 million people worldwide were expected to die from cancer in 2018 – about 26,000 cancer deaths a day – and that number is predicted to grow. It should be taken as a high alert and the government should prioritize this in their health and development agenda.
As an institution we urge our students and all individuals to come forward to discuss the causes and prevention of the disease and help people to adopt a healthy and balanced lifestyle. The growing impact of urbanization and unhealthy lifestyle is inviting chronic diseases, which needs to be checked at an early stage by following regular check-ups This World Cancer Day, I urge every individual to join the fight against cancer and stand against the misconceptions that cancer is not synonymous with ‘death’. It can be cured and treated.
-Ms. Rupal Dalal, Executive Director, JD Institute of Fashion Technology.