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Incidence of breast cancer increasing in urban India

Statistics show that the incidence of breast cancer is rapidly increasing in urban India and has overtaken cancer of the cervix as the number one cancer in our major metros according to a study conducted on women and cancer in India.//

The number of breast cancer cases is estimated to have reached 1.2 million worldwide.

Snacking, fatty food, late marriage and delayed motherhood are some factors that can lead to a high risk of breast cancer. Medical research shows that in postmenopausal women an enzyme called aromatase present in peripheral tissues such as fat, muscle and liver produces oestrogen that triggers breast cancer.

At the "Viva for Eva" - Breast Cancer Summit '05, doctors stressed that women coming from families where a mother or sister below the age of 50 has breast cancer are also at high risk. Changing attitudes to breast-feeding, stress and late menopause are other contributory factors. The data presented at the summit revealed that there are new options and improved treatments for women with breast cancer.

Women must avoid fatty food and exercise from an early age to reduce the risk of breast cancer, which has surpassed cervical cancer in metros.

We need to bring about awareness among women about how to reduce the risk of breast cancer. It is no more a death sentence, but an illness that can be managed like any other chronic illness like diabetes or hypertension. Early diagnosis and treatment is key to fighting breast cancer.

Source: Indo-Asian News Service

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