Health Female Adda
11 months ago
Top 5 types of cancers in Indian women you should know about

Did you know that the top five types of cancers in women (and also men) account for around 47.2% of all cancers [1]?And the surprising fact about this is that these cancers can be prevented, by early screening and detection and treatment at an early stage. This could not only reduce the death rate of these cancers but also improve the quality of life post-cancer treatment. Here are top five types of cancer in women in India you need to be aware of!

Breast cancer: Breast cancer is the most common cancer in women in India and accounts for 27% of all cancers in women. According to reports, 1 in 28 women is likely to develop breast cancer during her lifetime. In urban areas, 1 in 22 women develop breast cancer during her lifetime as compared to rural areas where 1 in 60 women develops breast cancer in her lifetime [2]. Self-examination of the breast is the best way to feel the breast for lumps or other abnormalities. The National Breast Cancer Foundation recommends that all women over the age of 20 should perform this test once every month.

Cervical cancer: Cervical cancer is the second most common cancer in India in women accounting for 22.86% of all cancer cases in women. According to statistics, rural women in India are at a high risk of suffering from cervical cancer as compared to those living in urban India. Although HPV (human papillomavirus) is the most common cause of cervical cancer, there are other factors that increase the risk of mortality. These include genital infection, tobacco use, long-term use of hormonal contraceptive pills and co-infection with HIV (Human Immunodeficiency Virus). Also read cervical cancer in India: What every sexually active woman should know.

Colorectal cancer: Although the incidence of CRC in India has increased only marginally, it is now the fifth most common cause of cancer mortality among Indian men and women. The mean age of colorectal cancer in India is around 40 – 45 years. The low incidence rate was associated with a low 5-year relative survival rate. This could be attributed to severe deficiencies in early diagnosis and effective treatment in India [3].

Ovarian cancer: In India, during the period 2004-2005, the proportion of ovarian cancer varied from 1.7% to 8.7% of all female cancers in various urban and rural population-based registries operating under the network of the National Cancer Registry Programme (NCRP) of Indian Council Medical Research. The Age-Specific Incidence Rate (ASIR) for ovarian cancer revealed that the disease increases from 35 years of age and reaches a peak between 55-64 years [4].

Lip and oral cancer: It is known that oral cancer is the most common cancer in India amongst men (11.28% of all cancers). But not many are aware that it is the third most frequently occurring cancer in India in women, which accounts t0 4.3% of all cancers. Around 80% of oral cancers are directly attributable to tobacco use and the mean age of oral cancer is 50 years [5]. Here are few symptoms of oral cancer that you should never ignore.


1. Sarnath D, Khanna A. Current Status of Cancer Burden: Global and Indian Scenario; 2014; Biomedical Res J.,1(1):1-5.

2. Chaurasia V, Pal S. A Novel Approach for Breast Cancer Detection using Data Mining Techniques.; 2014 International Journal of Innovative Research in Computer and Communication Engineering.; 2(1); 2456-65.

3. Pathy S, Lambert R, Sauvaget C, Sankaranarayanan R. The incidence and survival rates of colorectal cancer in India remain low compared with rising rates in East Asia. Dis Colon Rectum. 2012 Aug;55(8):900-6. doi: 10.1097/DCR.0b013e31825afc4e. PubMed PMID: 22810477.

4. Murthy NS, Shalini S, Suman G, Pruthvish S, Mathew A. Changing trends in incidence of ovarian cancer – the Indian scenario. Asian Pac J Cancer Prev. 2009;10(6):1025-30. PubMed PMID: 20192577.

5. NCRP — Consolidated Report of Hospital Based Cancer Registries 2007-2011, National Cancer Registry Programme (Indian Council of Medical Research), Bangalore, 2013

Image Source: Shutterstock


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