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Home / News / India /  India to record an estimated 12% rise in cancer cases by 2025- ICMR-NCDIR National Cancer Registry

New Delhi: There will be an estimated 12% rise in cancer cases in India in next five years, the Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR) said on Tuesday.

According to the estimates of the National Cancer Registry Programme Report 2020, released by the ICMR in association with National Centre for Disease Informatics & Research (NCDIR) Bengaluru, there will be about 13.9 lakhs cancer cases in 2020 which is likely to increase to 15.7 lakhs by 2025, based on current trends.

The estimates are based on information related to cancer collected from 28 Population Based Cancer Registries (PBCRs). Additionally, 58 Hospital Based Cancer Registries (HBCRs) provided cancer data.

In 2020, tobacco related cancers are estimated to contribute 3.7 lakhs (27.1%) of the total cancer burden. Among women, breast cancers are estimated to contribute 2.0 lakhs (14.8%) and cervix cancer are estimated to contribute 0.75 lakhs (5.4%), whereas for both men and women, cancers of the gastrointestinal tract is estimated to contribute 2.7 lakhs (19.7%) of the total cancer burden, according to the report.

As far as the distribution of cancer cases is concerned, the cancer incidence rate for male population ranges from 269.4 in Aizawl district (highest in India) to 39.5 in Osmanabad and Beed district per 1,00,000 population, according to the report. Similarly, the cancer incidence rate for women population ranges from 219.8 (Papumpare district) to 49.4 (Osmanabad & Beed district) per 100,000 population, the report said.

When the cases were looked at gender wise, the cancers related to use of any form of tobacco were highest in the North-eastern region of the country and in higher proportions in men. Also, Cancer of lung, mouth, stomach and oesophagus were the most common cancers among men.

When it came to disease burden in women, the Cancer of breast and cervix uteri were found to be the most common cancers.

“A significant increase in the incidence rates of breast cancers in women, and lung and head and neck cancers in both men and women was observed in most of the registries, however, a declining trend was seen in most of the registries for cancer of the cervix," the report said.

“Cancers of lung were diagnosed at a stage of spread to distant sites, while cancers of head and neck, stomach, breast and cervix were in higher proportions with loco-regional spread," the report said.

Majority of states in India have not declared cancer as a notifiable disease. So far, only nine States in India have cancer as a notifiable disease so far either as administrative order or Gazette notification, including Karnataka.

“Emphasis to be given to making cancer a notifiable disease to enable increase coverage by registries and establishment of registries in areas hitherto uncovered regions to get a more comprehensive national picture," said Dr Ravi Mehrotra, Chief Executive Officer (CEO), India Cancer Research Consortium (ICMR).

“This will help in better cancer screening, early detection, referral, treatment and palliative care services throughout the country. Sikkim was the only state in India to actually show a decrease in cancer prevalence for both genders, reflecting their good public health system and aware population," he said adding people living in NE India have more than double the chances of developing Cancer compared to other regions. He said this underlines the regions of the country which require focused attention.

Looking at the treatment modalities, the report said that multimodality treatment (a varied combination of surgery, chemotherapy and radiation therapy) was administered for cancers of breast and head and neck, while cancer cervix was treated mainly with radiotherapy and chemotherapy. For cancers of the lung and the stomach, systemic therapy was the mode of treatment, the report said.

ICMR set up the National Cancer Registry Programme (NCRP) in 1982. The programme is overseen by the ICMR National Centre for Disease Informatics & Research (NCDIR), Bengaluru. A network of population and hospital-based cancer registries (PBCR, HBCR) systematically collect data related to cancer incidence, mortality and clinical aspects to estimate burden, trends, survival and management.

The ICMR said that these results then facilitate efforts to strengthen cancer prevention and control throughout the country.

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