WHO Reports Over 114.1 lakh New Cancer Cases and 910,000 Deaths in India
WHO Reports Over 114.1 lakh New Cancer Cases and 910,000 Deaths in India

Ahead of World Cancer Day, World Health Organization (WHO) reported taht over 1.4 million new cancer cases and 910,000 deaths occurred in India in 2022. Breast cancer topped the list as the most common cancer. Among men, lip, oral cavity, and lung cancers were prevalent, making up 15.6% and 8.5% of new cases, respectively. For women, breast and cervix cancers were frequent, comprising around 27% and 18% of new cases. Within five years of diagnosis, approximately 3.26 million people in India were living with cancer, according to WHO estimates.

Globally, there were 20 million new cancer cases and 9.7 million deaths, with 53 million individuals surviving five years post-diagnosis. The WHO notes that 1 in 5 people develop cancer in their lifetime, resulting in approximately 1 in 9 men and 1 in 12 women succumbing to the disease.

In India, the risk of developing cancer before age 75 was 10.6%, with a 7.2% chance of dying from it. Globally, these risks were higher, at 20% and 9.6%, respectively.

The WHO highlights inadequate funding for cancer and palliative care services in many countries, with only 39% covering basic cancer management in their core health services. Only 28% additionally covered palliative care, including pain relief.

The International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC) found that 10 types of cancer accounted for two-thirds of global cases and deaths in 2022, with lung cancer being the most common and leading cause of cancer-related deaths. Persistent tobacco use in Asia is cited as a likely reason for this.

Breast cancer ranked second in frequency among women and accounted for nearly 7% of global cancer deaths, while cervical cancer was the eighth most common globally and the ninth leading cause of cancer death. The IARC emphasizes that cervical cancer can be eliminated through initiatives like the WHO Cervical Cancer Elimination Initiative.

The WHO urges countries to achieve specific targets by 2030 to eliminate cervical cancer, including vaccinating 90% of girls against HPV, screening 70% of women by age 35 and again by 45, and treating 90% of women with pre-cancer.

Regionally, Oceania had the highest cancer incidence rate, while Europe had the highest rate of cancer-related deaths. Oceania also had the highest risk of developing cancer before age 75, while Europe had the highest risk of dying from cancer.

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