Prostate cancer (PCa) is the second most common cause of cancer and the sixth leading cause of cancer death among men worldwide. The cancer projection data shows that the number of cases will become double by 2020. In India too, it is the second most common cancer in Indian males as per the Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR) and various state cancer registries. The incidence rate in India is 9-10/100,000 population which is higher than other parts of Asia and Africa but lower than USA and Europe.
The government of India has already taken steps and the Centre has made it mandatory to get the prostate-specific antigen (PSA) examination which highlights the seriousness towards the disease. Medical treatment for PCa requires money but screening and treatment at central government hospitals like RML, AIIM and Safdarjung is free of cost. To discuss the issues related to prostrate health in India, healthcare stakeholders are observing September/October as Prostrate Health month across the country. In this regard BioSpectrum India spoke with Dr Raghunath S.K, Uro-oncologist, Healthcare Global Enterprises Limited about the role the companies can play in making cancer treatment affordable. Excerpts of the interview-
As cost is key factor when it comes for cancer screening, according to you how companies can play role in making this affordable?
Prostate cancer forms the second largest cause of cancer in Men, in India. Unlike western countries, in India we do not have the practice of undergoing prostate cancer screening in early 50s. Early detection is the key to better prognosis. To ensure that Prostate Cancer is screened at the initial stage, it important that healthcare providers should join hands and create adequate awareness through organising regular camps on PSA screening after the age of 50 for men in India, make it cost effective and increase the affordability by conducting cancer awareness and screening camps, offer value based treatment through accurate diagnosis and precise medicine.
What kind of precautions one can take to be healthy and free from Prostate cancer?
One can observe the following precautions from prostate cancer, by practising lifestyle changes like
Why urban men are diagnosed with prostate cancer more than the rural men?
Urban men are diagnosed with Prostate cancer more commonly than rural because of the following few reasons -
According to you what are the Importance of Cancer Screening in early 50s?
As widely followed that early detection is the key to better prognosis in Cancer Care, prostate cancer too, is also curable if diagnosed at the initial stage. In India, since regular cancer screenings are not commonly in practice, most of the cases we receive are only when the grade of the disease has progressed to a higher stage. Treatment started at an already higher stage of cancer involves longer stay in hospital, financial and emotional burden and abridged quality of life.
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