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186,840 Nigerians may get cancer this year, says WHO


Some 186,840 of the 180 million Nigerians are expected to get cancer this year, and the patients are more likely to die because of poor healthcare.

A new data from the International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC) tagged World Cancer League Table rated Nigeria 157th among 185 countries with cancer.

Even as the ranking is low, the agency revealed that the patients are likely to die due to lack of proper care.


IARC is an arm of the World Health Organisation (WHO).

The data predicts 18 million new diagnoses in 2018 and the death of 9.6 million people worldwide from the disease this year.

Analysis of the data showed that rates are lower (approximately seven per cent) in African and Asian countries.

But the continent’s death rate tends to be higher, mainly because cancers are not caught early or not easily treatable given the limited health resources there.

However, people have a better chance of survival in developed countries, but there are still more cases because of inactive and unhealthy modern lifestyles.

Australia has the most, followed by New Zealand. The United States (U.S.) is fifth while the United Kingdom (UK) 13th.

According to the report, globally, one in five men and one in six women will develop cancer at some point during their lifetime, and it is expected to become the leading cause of deaths.

Experts say the new figures reveal an alarming rise in cancer cases around the globe and that more needs to be done to tackle it.

The cancer threat has risen by 28 per cent since the 14 million cases and eight million deaths predicted in 2012, when the IARC data was last updated.

Head of cancer surveillance at IARC, Dr. Freddie Bray, predicted there would be 29 million cases of cancer by 2040 and 16 million deaths.

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