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Oncologist attributes increase in cancer mortality to inaccurate diagnoses

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Chief Consultant Clinical and Radiation Oncologist, National Hospital, Abuja, Dr. Bello Mohammed, yesterday, lamented the increase in cancer cases in the country, just as he advised people to eat fruits and vegetables to lower their risk of developing cancer.

The oncologist said the increase in cancer mortality is largely due to delay in accurate diagnoses and particularly lack of awareness on the part of the public.

He gave the advice during a valedictory lecture titled: “Reducing the Scourge of Cancer”, organised in honour of Prof. Lawrence Chukwuma Chiedozi, as the erudite Professor of Surgery takes a bow from service with Igbinedion University Okada (IUO), Edo State.

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Mohammed, who described cancer disease as a malignant growth or tumour resulting from an uncontrolled division of cells said, “Cancer mortality in more developed countries is projected to decrease by 30 per cent by 2030 and in developing countries projected to increase by 70 per cent by 2030. By 2030, 85 per cent of all cancer deaths may be occurring in low-middle income countries.

“The increase in cancer mortality is largely due to delay in accurate diagnoses, lack of awareness about cancer and potential value of therapy, lack of access and ability to deliver potentially curative therapy and abandonment of therapy.”

Mohammed said developed countries reduced cancer mortalities by improving on good health system and primary healthcare, such as vaccination against preventable diseases.

Others are secondary healthcare – early recognition of symptoms and good referral system and tertiary healthcare – availability of clinicians to make proper diagnosis.

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