Preventive Oncology – Prevent the Preventable

Preventive Oncology - Prevent the Preventable

Cancer is one of the leading causes of death in India.

It is estimated that there are nearly 2.5 million cancer cases at any given point of time, with over 11.5 lakh new cases and more than 7.84 lakh deaths occurring every year due to this disease.(Globocan 2018)

5 MOST COMMON CANCERS IN INDIA (*Source Globocan 2018)

Males Females
Lip & Oral Cavity Breast
Lung Cervix uteri
Stomach Ovary
Colorectum Colorectum Lip & Oral Cavity
Esophagus Colorectum
  • Over 70% of cancer cases are report in advanced stage of the disease, resulting in poor survival.
  • The only way to win the battle against cancer is through Prevention & Early Detection.
  • Regular screening helps detect many cancers in early stages, when they can be treated successfully giving the best survival.
  • Department of Preventive Oncology primarily focuses on creating awareness among the public about the need to screen for early detection of cancer.
  • If clinically or through test report we detect any pre-cancerous lesions or early cancers they are cured completely.

Preventive Services offered in GGHC are

  • Awareness Programs
  • Screening Camps
  • Screening Tests

Breast cancer screening

Cancer Screening is a collective term given to a series of medical tests performed on asymptomatic and apparently healthy individuals to check for the presence of precancerous lesions. Breast cancer screening involves evaluation of symptom-free, apparently healthy females aged between 20-70 years for early detection of breast cancer. Breast cancer screening is done through clinical examination and mammography.

  • Clinical Breast Examination (CBE): It involves a detailed evaluation of history, physical examination of breasts and under-arm regions, palpation of breasts in different positions and examination of lymph nodes.
  • Mammography (FULL FIELD DIGITAL MAMMOGRAM): Mammography uses low-dose X-ray radiation to detect precancerous and cancerous growth in the breasts.

Colorectal cancer screening

Colorectal cancer screening is performed to detect abnormal growths called polyps, which protrude from the inner walls of colon and rectum. Colorectal cancers become symptomatic only in the advanced stages.

  • Faecal Occult Blood Test (FOBT): It is performed to check for blood in the faecal matter, which is a sign of a polyp or early-stage colorectal cancer.
  • Upper/Lower Gastrointestinal Endoscopy: Upper and lower GI endoscopies act as extremely sensitive cancer screening tools and help doctors in detecting precancerous lesions or polyps that could be signs of early-stage colorectal cancer.

Prostate cancer screening

Prostate cancer progresses at a slower rate; therefore, regular screening may help in catching cancer even before it starts exhibiting symptoms. Prostate cancer screening is done through PSA test and digital rectal examination.

  • PSA test (Biomarker Assessment):
  • It is a simple blood test performed to assess the levels of Prostate-Specific Antigen (PSA), which is a special protein biomarker produced by both malignant and benign prostate tissue. High PSA levels in the blood may indicate the risk of prostate cancer.

Cervical cancer screening

Cervical cancer is100 percent preventable. Cervical cancer screening is performed to detect any abnormalities in the cervical cells that could lead to cervical cancer. Regular screening helps in their early detection in the Precancerous state. Pap test is an effective cervical cancer screening method.

Pap smear test: During a Pap test or Pap smear, samples of cervical cells are collected and checked for irregularities. Precancerous cellular changes can be managed with appropriate treatment.

Colposcopy clinic: Colposcopy clinic offers diagnosis and treatment for pre-invasive diseases of the cervix, vulva, and vagina. When appropriately treated, cancers of these sites may be prevented.

Vaccination to prevention cancer

Vaccinations are available for the oncoviruses - Human papillomavirus (HPV) and Hepatitis B Virus (HBV)

Human papillomavirus (HPV) vaccination:

  • HPV vaccine helps prevent cervical, vaginal, vulvar, penile and anal cancers along with oropharyngeal cancers.
  • HPV vaccines are recommended for individuals aged 9-26 years.
  • It must be noted that the HPV vaccine is not a substitute for cervical cancer screening; all women, including those who are vaccinated, should undergo cervical cancer screening regularly.

Hepatitis B Virus (HBV) vaccination:

  • HBV causes Hepatitis-B, which if left untreated, may cause liver cancer. Individuals of all age groups can take HBV vaccines.

Other services

Counselling on Lifestyle Modification

  • Cancer is a lifestyle disease that a healthier and active lifestyle can prevent.
  • Factors like sedentary lifestyle, unhealthy diet and chronic stress can trigger tumour formation.
  • These factors also aggravate the tumour growth in patients with stage 1 and stage 2 cancers.
  • Lifestyle modification counselling sessions focus on creating awareness on the importance of having an active lifestyle, prudent diet and effective stress management strategies.

Tobacco and Alcohol Cessation Clinic

Tobacco and alcohol are the causes of several preventable diseases, including cancer. Abstaining from tobacco and alcohol consumption is proven to reduce the risk of crucial diseases like cancer.

Obesity Clinic

Healthy weight management helps in bringing down the risks of various cancer types. Carefully planned diet regimens can help obese individuals maintain a healthy weight and reduce the risk of various chronic diseases.

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