November 4, 2016
Lung cancer would claim a life every nine minutes in India and every eight minutes an Indian would be diagnosed with lung cancer, according to the latest Globocan (an International agency for research on cancer) report.
“It is the fourth largest killer after breast, cervical, and oral cavity cancer. In men it is ranked second, while in women it is sixth in terms of cancer incidence. Around 53,728 new lung cancer cases were reported among Indian men and 16,547 cases among Indian women,” said Dr. B. Sivanesan, Consultant Medical Oncologist, GKNM Hospital, Coimbatore.
“Ninety per cent of lung cancer occurs due to exposure to tobacco. The history of active tobacco smoking was found in 87 per cent in men and 85 per cent in women. The role of passive tobacco exposure is three per cent,” he said
However, a significant number of patients with lung cancer have no history of smoking.
“The fatality rate is very high because, most of the cases are not diagnosed at early stage. Often it is wrongly diagnosed as tuberculosis,” he said. “Smoking is the major reason for causing the malignant cell but apart from that, environmental pollution, lifestyle choices and eating habits play a major role. This is not just an urban disease. Smoking bidi, chewing gutka are also some of the causes.”
“Some of the symptoms of lung cancer include persistent cough, coarse voice, chest pain and weight loss.” Dr.Sivanesan said.
Good diet and healthy eating habits can minimize the risk of lung cancer. Avoiding passive smoking, and exposure to carcinogens like asbestos and harmful particulate material present in the air are some of the other causes say Oncologists.