Indore: The number of young people suffering from head and neck cancer is increasing, thanks to increasing consumption of tobacco and excessive consumption of alcohol. On the eve of the World Head and Neck Cancer Day, Dr Dilip Acharya, chairman, Indian Medical Association National Cancer and Tobacco Control Committee, said that oral cancer is a major public health problem and the government should lay more stress on primary prevention of oral cancers by stopping people from smoking and chewing tobacco as it is a preventable cause of head and neck cancer.
Dr Apurva Gar, consultant head and neck onco-surgeon, Choithram Hospital, said it is the most common form of cancer among males and the fourth most common cancer among females in our country. Both the experts emphasised prevention of the disease as it is simple and easier than treatment of the disease.
Symptoms of the disease
Ulcers in the cheeks
White and red spots in the mouth
Loosening of teeth
Change in voice
Difficulty and pain in swallowing food
Swelling in the neck
‘Productive age group’
"Nearly 30 per cent of the cancers in India are head and neck cancers and account for nearly 1.5 lakh new cases every year. It mainly affects people in the productive age group, although most of this mortality and morbidity is totally preventable," Dr Dilip Acharya, chairman, Indian Medical Association National Cancer and Tobacco Control Committee, said.
'Most common sites’
"Due to late diagnoses, over 1 lakh patients die due to the disease each year. The most common sites of this cancer are the oral cavity, throat and thyroid. More than 80 per cent of the patients are addicted to tobacco, pan masala, gutka, cigarettes, bidis, suparis and alcohol. More than 25 per cent of the adult population of India is addicted to one or the other form of tobacco," remarked Dr Apurva Gar, consultant head and neck onco-surgeon, Choithram Hospital.
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