92,000 cases of oral cancer diagnosed every year in India

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Mumbai, Oct 13 (UNI) There are 92,000 new cases of oral cancer diagnosed every year in our country with 80 per cent of these in the late stages of III and IV, said Dr Zahra Hussaini, HOD, Centre of Advanced Oral Care, Nanavati Hospital, Mumbai here.

Speaking to newspersons yesterday, Dr Hussaini elaborated,'' The five year survival was in the range of 30 per cent (as majority are in the late stages) which means that there is a death due to oral cancer every seven minutes in our country.'' ''The risk factor for oral cancer is nine times more for smokers than for non smokers and seventeen times greater for extremely heavy smokers,''she said.

While people, who snuff and chew tobacco are four times at a greater risk for chronic users and the people, who consume alcohol and tobacco are upto 100 times at a greater risk,'' she informed.

Although most of the epidemiological data for the disease comes from the Western world there is enough evidence for its prioritisation as a major global health problem. An estimated 350,000 to 400,000 newcases are diagnosed each year. Approximately 50 per cent of patients survive for five years after the treatment.

The prognosis forthe patients is even worse in the developing countries where they have limited access to oral health services and seek medical attention when the malignancy is at an advanced stage.

Also patients, who survive a first encounter with the disease, have 20 times higher risk of developing a disease five to ten years fter the first lesion.

''Oral cancer can be prevented if chewers smokers and alcoholics examine their mouth once in a month for any white patches, ulcers, growth etc.'' Dr Hussaini said, The Indian Dental Association (IDA) had organised the International CDE programme on Oral cancer Prevention across the country last month. Over 2500 dentists were trained against oral cancer at these events. IDA introduced the Revolutionary Brush Test technology developed by Oral CDx Laboratories USA.

OralCDx, a computer assisted method of analysis of the oral brush biopsy, in the detection of precancerous and cancerous lesions of the oral mucosa without the use of any incision or even an injection.'' The test can aid in conforming the nature of apparently benign oral lesions and more significantly revealing those that are precancerous and cancerous when they are not clinically suspected of being so,'' Dr Hussanini added.

UNI

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