Silchar: By 2035 there would be more than 23 million cases of cancer in India. Now it is just above 14 million.
This staggering data was revealed by Padma Shree Dr Lalit Kumar, professor and head, department of medical oncology at All India Institute of Medical Sciences, Dr B R Ambedkar Institute – Rotary Cancer Hospital, New Delhi, at the 5th Dr S Krishnamurthi memorial lecture on 'Cancer treatment in India: Challenges and Opportunities' held at Cachar Cancer Hospital and Research Centre (CCHRC), Meherpur in Silchar on Saturday night.
Dt Lalit Kumar emphasized on the lifestyle factors that contribute to the alarming rise of cancer in India. His deliberation pointed out that early detection of the disease is a must for curing it. "Consumption of tobacco and alcohol, diet, obesity, lack of physical exercises, environmental pollutants, infections, and stress are the life style factors which are posing threat to life. Cancer is, in fact, the interplay of immunity, genes, life style and environment. Tobacco related cases are highest in north eastern region. It is heartbreaking and upsetting that people are still chewing tobacco and consuming alcohol," he added to say.
As per the PBCR-ICMR records, the prevalence of tobacco related cases in northeast is highest in Kamrup urban district, Dibrugarh and Cachar. Early detection of cancer, Dr Kumar pointed out, is a must and it should be kept in mind that this deadly and dreaded disease could be cured at certain stages. He said, "In India, breast cancer cases are highest among the females and prostate among the males. The rising incidences of breast cancer cases owe to many factors like lack of awareness, change in life style, late marriage, decreased child bearing and breast feeding, diet, obesity and lack of physical activities."
Dr Lalit Kumar, who has already done more than thousand bone marrow and stem cells transplants with results comparable with international standard, is a recipient of Dr B C Roy National Award. His vast and insightful knowledge threw light on the various aspects of prevention of cancer. He said awareness, education, legislation, community participation and tobacco cessation services regarding cancer are steps that would help in fighting cancer. "Walking and other exercises are essential and these good and healthy habits should be inculcated. Poverty leads to illness which in turn leads to poverty," said Dr Kumar.
Later, he was honoured with Dr S Krishnamurthi Memorial Award 2018 which was handed over to him by Dr K P Chakraborty. Among others who spoke on the occasion included Dr R Kannan, director, CCHRC, Mihir Kar Purkayastha and Dr K P Chakraborty. Both Dr Kannan and Dr Lalit Kumar threw light on the chequered life and times of Dr S Krishnamurthi. In the final analysis, it can be said that the lecture session ended on a high note with some insightful knowledge on cancer treatment in India, challenges and opportunities.