Over 17 lakh new cancer cases in India by 2020: ICMR

New Delhi: India is likely to have over 17.3 lakh new cases of cancer and over 8.8 lakh deaths due to the disease by 2020 with cancers of breast, lung and cervix topping the list, a premier medical research body said today.

In its projection, the Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR) said in 2016 the total number of new cancer cases is expected to be around 14.5 lakh and the figure is likely to reach nearly 17.3 lakh new cases in 2020.

Over 7.36 lakh people are expected to succumb to the disease in 2016 while the figure is estimated to shoot up to 8.8 lakh by 2020. Data also revealed that only 12.5 per cent of patients come for treatment in early stages of the disease.

Among females, breast cancer topped the list and among males mouth cancer, the study said.

The northeast reported the highest number of cancer cases in both males and females. Aizawl district in Mizoram reported the highest number of cases among males while Papumpare district in Arunachal Pradesh recorded the highest number among females.

"Cancer of breast with estimated 1.5 lakh (over 10 per cent of all cancers) new cases during 2016, is the number one cancer overall. Cancer of the lung is the next with estimated 1.14 lakh (83,000 in males and 31,000 in females) new cases during 2016 and 1.4 lakh cases in 2020.

"Cancer of the cervix is the third most common cancer with estimated 1 lakh new cases in 2016 and about 1.04 lakh during 2020. Cancers associated with the use of tobacco account for about 30 per cent of all cancers in males and females," the ICMR said.

The ICMR also conducted a country-wide study from 2012-14 from various Population Based Cancer Registeries (PBCR) and Hospital Based Registeries.

It also stated there was a "significant" increase in cancers of rectum and colon in males in the PBCRs at Bangalore, Chennai, and Delhi and in females in Barshi and Bhopal.

Among males, there was also a significant increase in the cases of cancers of colon, rectum and prostate in Bengalore, Chennai and Delhi while among women there was a significant
increase in the rate of cancers related to breast, uterus, ovary and lung.

However, the PBCRs in Bangalore, Chennai, Barshi, Bhopal, Delhi and Mumbai have shown a decrease in incidents of cervical cancer. Delhi also tops the chart for cancer among children.

Among males, mouth cancer is leading in registry areas of the western states of the country while among the females of East Khasi hills in Meghalaya recorded the highest number of cases of mouth cancer among women. "One in eight Indians is likely to develop cancer in their lifetime, unless you are in Aizawl where the chances are one in four" A Nandkumar, Head of National Cancer Registry said.

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