An alarming rise of cancer related incidences has revealed startling facts on the growing number of different cancers in India. According to an international study and as per WHO, the survival rates of cancer patients are either stagnant or going up at a very slow rate compared to developed countries. Even though there has been an increase in awareness and better medical facilities there is a still wide gap between survival rates for cancer patients between India and most countries.
Survival rates for some of the common types of cancers are listed below
- 19% for stomach cancer compared to 25-30% in most countries.
- 37% for colon cancer compared to 50-59% for most countries.
- Only 4% of liver cancer survive for five years in India compared to 10 – 20% elsewhere.
- 60% survival rate for breast and prostate cancers compared to 80% in advanced countries.
Mortality rates are falling across the world but in developing nations the mortality rates are around 70% and 1 in 5 cancer related deaths are from India.
- 70% of cancer related deaths occur in the first year in India, due to late detection and access to quality healthcare.
- 80% patients consult doctors at an advanced stage where recovery chances are slim.
- 71% of deaths occur in the age band of 30-69 in India, while in developed countries incidences are higher for people above 50 years.
- 15% cancer patients are children and adolescent in India, compared to the global average of 0.5%.
One possible reason is that cancer in India is diagnosed in later stages resulting in the treatment being complex and the probability of beating cancer also goes down. Even though awareness about cancer has increased, individuals still do not adhere to regular screening procedures. This could be due to lack of sufficient information and socio-economic factors.
Even though there are Population Based Cancer Registries (PBCR), they are not enough and still do not present an accurate picture of the cancer incidences in India.
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