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Over 100 cancers affect humans, says surgeon

By Gordi Udeajah, Umuahia
10 November 2016   |   2:03 am
In the developing world, he stated that 20 per cent of cancers are due to infections such as hepatitis B, hepatitis C and Human Papilloma Virus (HPV).


• Calls for early intervention

Professor of Surgery at Abia State University Uturu (ABSU), Dr. Augustus Mbanaso, has said that over 100 cancers affect humans positing that when screening is introduced to detect diseases, it would lead to early intervention, which is the hope for a cure.

He also stated that early detection and intervention would also reduce the morbidity and mortality especially in such dreaded diseases like cancer adding however that in the case of breast cancer, it could be cured if detected at its early stage.

Mbanaso, a medical practitioner of forty-one years, posited these while delivering a special lecture titled “None of These Diseases ” at the Abia State University Uturu ABSU. He said that while medical doctors who with their God-given knowledge and expertise treat the patients and give good advice on health care to prevent affliction, healing is as determined by God.

He said that tobacco use is the cause of about 22 per cent of cancer deaths and another 10 per cent due to obesity, poor diet, lack of physical activity and drinking alcohol. Others, Mbanaso said, include infections, exposure to ionizing radiation and environmental pollutants.

In the developing world, he stated that 20 per cent of cancers are due to infections such as hepatitis B, hepatitis C and Human Papilloma Virus (HPV).

Describing breast cancer as a public health concern that requires proper health education and acceptance of screening methods, the lecturer said that the cause is unknown but that there are associated factors that determine its frequency in the population.

He disclosed that while cancer of the breast is a leading cause of the death in women, next to cancer of the cervix, scientists are trying to better understand which people are more likely to get certain types of cancer.

According to Mbanaso, breast cancer is a disease in which malignant cells form in the tissues of the breast. If a screening test result is abnormal, you may need to have more tests done to find out if you have cancer.

He expressed delight that Nigerian Medical Schools are training more doctors that are also specializing saying ” the aim is to ultimately prevent diseases especially the dreaded cancer.

Mbanaso agrees with the provision in the Scripture that “none of these diseases will be upon us, if we obey the rules. But that there is a rider that God is the Lord that healeth us.”

The recent alarm on rising global incidence of cancer by the World Health Organisation (WHO) should worry African countries, including Nigeria, where the disease is most prevalent. Available statistics show that cancer killed 7.6 million persons in 2008 worldwide, and there is indication that the figure could double to 13 million by 2030. According to WHO, cancer accounts for 13 percent of all deaths registered globally and 70 percent of that figure occurs in middle and low income countries. In Nigeria, about 10,000 cancer deaths are recorded annually while 250,000 new cases are recorded yearly. It is also worrisome that only 17 percent of African countries are said to have sufficiently funded cancer control programmes, while less than half of all countries in the world have functional plans to prevent the disease and provide treatment and care to patients.

WHO indicates that the shortage of functional cancer control plans is especially alarming in developing countries, which already account for more than two-thirds of the new cancer cases and deaths each year.