Breast cancer afflicts urban women more

Breast cancer afflicts urban women more

Rural females more prone to cervical cancer in Karnataka

Breast cancer afflicts urban women more

In what seems to be an evident trend, cases of breast cancer are on the rise in cities and towns in Karnataka while cervical cancer afflicts women in rural areas more. 

Cases of breast cancer have gone up among women from well-off families over the years, statistics from the State’s Cancer Survey show. Out of the 51,000 new cases reported in Karnataka every year, cervical cancer accounts for 26 per cent and breast cancer 22 per cent. 

Most cases are diagnosed late making it challenging for doctors to save the patients, according to Dr Ramesh C, professor and head, Kidwai Memorial Institute of Oncology. “Cervical cancer is more prevalent in rural areas and among poor women for whom screening is not available easily,” he told Deccan Herald. “There is also stigma associated with it.” 

Poor hygiene is the biggest factor contributing to cervical cancer. “Defecating or urinating in the open and poor hygiene of the reproductive organs is the main cause,” he explained. Early marriage, having multiple sexual partners that leads to infections from the HIV (Human Immunodeficiency Virus) and HPV (Human Papilloma Virus) types 16, 18, 31 and 45 are also high risk factors, he added. 

Lack of exercise and obesity are the leading factors that contribute to urban women developing breast cancer. “It’s important to understand that breast-feeding can curb cancer to a great extent. Most women, especially those working, tend to ignore this,” he said. 

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