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Home News and Update Year 2010 Doctors Blame Urbanisation And Lifestyle For Breast Cancer

Doctors Blame Urbanisation And Lifestyle For Breast Cancer

DNA India
22 October 2010
By Soumita Majumdar
Bangalore, India

About 25 women in every one lakh female population in Bangalore are suffering from breast cancer, statistics have revealed.

Two decades ago the figure was 18.2. Oncologists are holding urbanisation and lifestyle responsible for more and more women in their 30s or late–20s falling prey to the disease.

October is observed as breast cancer awareness month and pink is the international symbol for breast cancer awareness. For the ’Pink October Month 2010’, HealthCare Global Enterprises Ltd (HCG) has pledged to conscientise young women to the perils of the disease as it is increasingly becoming evident that they are potential victims.

"Ideally, post–menopausal age is the time when women are at risk of developing breast cancer. Though 80% of the cases still cater to this age group, of late, we are seeing women in their 30s and 40s, the pre–menopausal stage, becoming affected by the disease," says Dr Niti Raizada Narang, head, Centre of Breast Health and Genetic Counselling Clinic, HCG.

Urban women are more prone to the disease than their rural counterparts and urban lifestyle plays a big role in this, says the doctor. "Breast cancer is a hormone dependent cancer. External replacement of hormone in the body through hormone therapy can promote breast cancer. Treatment for infertility for a long duration can lead to breast cancer," explains Dr Narang.

The urban lifestyle, including late marriages, child birth after 35 and lesser opportunities for breast feeding with increasing number of single–child mothers, heightens the risk of breast cancer, she says.

Also, what many women are unaware of is that there are preventive measures, both in the form of drugs and lifestyle modifications, to keep breast cancer at bay. "People associated with family history of breast cancer, should consult oncologists for preventive measures. If the cancer is detected at stage zero, it can be cured with lifestyle modification alone," Dr Narang says.

Dr BS Ajaikumar, chairman, HCG, says, "Since breast cancer is seen more as a lifestyle disorder, we wish to educate young women on various precautions that need to be taken. We plan to tie up with like–minded organisations in urban centres and spread the message through various channels. Also, we wish to sensitise the potentially high risk category among young women."

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