Saturday, 10 April 2010

Incidence of Childhood Cancer in Rural India

Although 70% of the Indian population lives in villages, we have relatively little real information about cancer in them as most of the population-based cancer registries (PBCRs) are urban. The incidence and mortality patterns of these urban PBCRs cannot provide an accurate picture for the entire country as the environmental exposures and the gene-environment interactions leading to cancer could be substantially different within different part of India.

In such a context the first report of the rural PBCR at Dindigul Ambilikkai in Tamil Nadu provides us useful information about cancer incidence (including childhood cancer incidence) in rural India (Ref - Swaminathan et al, Cancer Epidemiology, Nov 2009). The reported incidence of cancer in boys less than 15 years of age of 56 million person years and in girls of 46 million person years is similar to reports from the two other rural PBCRs in India and much less than that reported from the urban PBCRs in India and from other parts of the world (Ref - Arora et al, Indian Journal of Cancer, Oct-Dec 2009).

Under-diagnosis (and consequently under-registration) of childhood cancer due to lack of adequate access to diagnostic and clinical services is likely to be the main reason for the lower incidence of childhood cancer seen in rural India (Ref - Arora, Cancer Epidemiology, Feb 2010) and (Ref - Swaminathan et al, Cancer Epidemiology, Feb 2010)

1 comment:

  1. It will be useful if you could let us know the signs and symptoms that can help us recognize cancer in children, as and when they get infected.