According to this article in the Times of India, there are a million new cases being reported every year and the incidence is expected to rise five-fold by 2025 in India.According to medical professionals, lung and oral cancers are the most common among men while cervix and breast cancer are striking more and more women.
A few not so pleasant statistics from this article:
-Annually, nearly 500,000 people die of cancer in India. The WHO said this number is expected to rise to 700,000 by 2015.
-Cervical cancer is the second most common in women worldwide. Unlike some other cancers, it strikes as early as 32-35 years of age.
-According to Health Ministry data, out of more than 300 cancer centres in India, 40 percent are not adequately equipped with advanced cancer care equipment. India will need at least 600 additional cancer care centres by 2020 to meet the requirements.
-The health ministry is working towards a target doctor-patient ratio of 1:1,000 by 2021, which at present is 1:2,000.
Doctors say the causes of such a high incidence of cancer may be both internal like genetic, hormonal and poor immune conditions as well as external or environmental like food habits, industrialization, over growth of population and lifestyle. Ignorance among the public, delayed diagnosis and lack of adequate medical facilities has given cancer the dubious distinction of being a “killer disease”. However, the fact remains that if cancer is detected in its early stages, it can be treated and an individual can lead a healthy life. It is important to create awareness about common types of cancer and their symptoms among the general public and that food plays a pivotal role in cancer prevention.