Explaining the reason why the number of cancer cases in Vietnam keeps increasing, at the conference on national cancer prevention in Hanoi on July 19, Director of the Hospital K, which is focused on cancer treatment, Tran Van Thuan pointed out four reasons.
First, Vietnamese people’s life expectancy is increasing, reaching 73.5 years old now. The higher the age is, the greater the incidence of cancer is.
Second, people’s awareness of cancer is better, thanks to expanding communication, thus, people go to health clinics more often, thereby more diseases have been detected.
Third, medical advances and better diagnostic techniques help doctor better detect diseases.
Fourth, only 10% of the causes of cancer is due to endocrine disorders or genetic damage within the body, 80% is due to external unhealthy agents such as smoking, alcoholic drinks, diet, among others.
“In particular, smoking is the main cause of lung cancer, larynx cancer, esophagus cancer, oral cavity cancer, breast cancer, stomach cancer, cervix cancer and 30% of patients contracts cancers through smoking,” Thuan said, adding that Vietnam is currently in the top 15 countries with the largest smoker population in the world.
In addition to unreasonable diet, food pollution accounts for about 35% of the causes. Excessive consumption of meat and few vegetables may increase the risk of colorectal cancer or eating foods with mold may increase the risk of liver and stomach cancer, according to Van Thuan.
Besides, there are other cancer causes including bacteria, viruses, environmental pollution, radiation, among others.
However, Thuan emphasized that even though the incidence of cancer in Vietnam has increased, it is currently only in the average group of the world.
Regarding the cause of the high mortality rate due to cancer in Vietnam, Prof. Thuan said that there are more than 70% of cancer patients coming to hospital for treatment in the late stage, so it is difficult to treat, especially for liver cancer and lung cancer, the rate of treatment in the late stage is up to 80-90%.
“If detected at an early stage, 95 to 99% of cancer patients can be cured. Even for breast cancer, the rate of successful treatment in Vietnam has also reached 75%, equal to that of the world,” Thuan stressed.
To reduce the death rate due to cancer, Prof. Thuan emphasized that people need to have a routine health check to detect cancer early. This is a prerequisite to reduce mortality from cancer. People whose relatives have breast or colorectal cancer need cancer screening.
To prevent cancer, people need to lead a moderate life, do exercise regularly, avoid smoking and drinking alcohol, Thuan suggested.
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