1375P - Cancer awareness programmes in urban and semi-urban populations of west Bengal, India

Date 30 September 2012
Event ESMO Congress 2012
Session Poster presentation II
Topics Bioethics, Legal, and Economic Issues
Patient Education and Advocacy
Presenter Priyabrata Das
Authors P. Das1, J. Basak2, C.K. Bose3, A. Mukhopadhyay4, S. Mukhopadhyay1
  • 1Dept Of Molecular Biology, Netaji Subhash Chandra Bose Cancer Research Institute, 700016 - Kolkata/IN
  • 2Molecular Biology, Netaji Subhash Chandra Bose Cancer Research Institute, 700016 - Kolkata/IN
  • 3Clinical Reseach, Netaji Subhas Chandra Bose Cancer Research Institute, 700016 - Kolkata/IN
  • 4Dept. Medical Oncology, Netaji Subhas Chandra BoseCancer Research Institute, IN-700016 - Kolkata/IN



Of the current world estimate of 9 million new cancer cases diagnosed each year, India contributes 7l akhs new cases every year with an overall count of 20 lakhs. Of these, 2.3 lakhs cancer (33%) are obesity and life style related.


Our non-government cancer control program aims to educate the urban and semi-urban population in and around the outskirts of the city of Kolkata about the perils of cancer and its symptoms. Ultimately it aspires to create public awareness regarding the inter-relation between obesity, cancer and lifestyle modification, thus informing them about the benefits of minor lifestyle changes in preventing cancer.


A 5 year (Jan‘06–Dec’11), bi-monthly awareness program was conducted by NCRI in Kolkata and its immediate outskirts targeting the urban and semi-urban population. Main concerns were oral, breast and cervical cancers detected by oral examination, self breast inspection, Pap Smear test followed by collecting patient history and lifestyle factors including dietary fat-caloric & tobacco intake, alcohol consumption, and weight of the subject which might act as a pre-determinant disease markers. Positive screening results stage-specific planning of treatment and/or palliative care at our institute.


Enthusiastic public participation (app.85%) including women was observed. Out of 46,000 screened individuals, cancer was detected in 3840 (8%) cases, of which 58% were female and 42% were male. Incidence of breast cancer in female were predominant (29.99%), followed by cervical carcinoma (23.99%). Tobacco habits predominated among 80% of males and 20% of females. Hence oral cancer was the most common (35.98%) amongst men, followed by lung cancer (29.98 %).


The results showed a strong association of overweight and obesity with cancer in this group primarily due to life style, dietary and smoking habits. Hence some minor lifestyle choices which encompasses dietary restriction of calorie/fat intake and avoiding animal protein especially red meat, cessation of tobacco and alcohol intake, exercising and maintaining an ideal body-mass index, healthy body weight and composition through a diet rich in fruits and green vegetables reduces the risk of cancer.


All authors have declared no conflicts of interest.