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Home > News > PTI

Northeast more prone to cancer

January 11, 2007 12:37 IST

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People in northeastern states are more prone to cancers affecting stomach, gall bladder and lungs compared to others living elsewhere in the country, a recent research has said.

"The rates and patterns of cancer are strikingly different in the northeastern states," said Kishor Chowdhary, Deputy Director General of Indian Council of Medical Research.

These findings have come out for the first time after the Population Based Cancer Registries under North Eastern Regional Cancer Registry data was published.

"For the first time, we have authentic data available on cancer cases in four northeastern states," he said. This is the first report for the years 2003 and 2004.

There is a network of cancer registries in the country since 1981, but the Northeast Regional Cancer Registry started accessing data from January 1, 2003 only.

"We had an idea that stomach and lung cancers were the most reported ones in these states, but we were surprised when we found that gall bladder equally affects people in these states. We were able to find this out after the registry findings came out," Chowdhary told PTI.

The findings are from four states Assam, Manipur, Mizoram and Sikkim.

"It showed that there is a need to have separate focus on cancer research and control in these states," he said.

The study has shown that lung cancer was more prevalent in Imphal.

Females in Manipur and Mizoram are more prone to Lung cancer while males in Mizoram and Sikkim succumns more to stomach cancer.

In both males and females, Aizawal district showed the highest incidence of stomach cancer, which was several folds higher than that seen in Chennai and Bangalore, the study said.

The report said the "cancer of stomach is both a priority for research and a target for early detection.

Similarly, cancer of the gall bladder, nasopharyngeal cancer, thyroid cancer and myeloid leukemia in which studies need to be undertaken."

"These are the findings we need to focus on. It is because of the registry that we have some accurate figures on the cancer situation in northeastern states," Chowdhary said.

The National Cancer Registry Programme was started by ICMR with a network of cancer registries across the country in December 1981.

The objective was to generate reliable data on the magnitude and patterns of cancer, undertake epidemiological studies based on results of registry data, help in designing, planning, monitoring and evaluation of cancer control activities under the National Cancer Control Programme, the officer said.

"There appears to be a need to have an extended and explicit programme of cancer control for the northeast, not only because of the high incidence of certain cancers, but also because of the distinct patterns of cancer seen here, than that observed inĀ  the rest of the country," the report said.

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