Editorial

Cancer Needs to Come out of the Closet

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The science and silence associated with cancer demarcates the stark reality of the grim world we live in. Each country is struggling with cancer epidemic in its own way. Some nations have emerged successful and are on the path of transformation but where do we stand ? What have we achieved so far ? Is the public well informed and are we aware of the cancer lurking in the air, food and water ? Are the health professions playing their role in early detection, treatment, care and rehabilitation ?Have the policy makers charted out a road map to conquer cancer ?An honest answer followed by the sincere effort to achieve them is the need of the hour.

It is time to wake up before things get out of control and the situation spins from bad to worse.The total cancer cases are likely to go up from 979,786 cases in the year 2010 to 1,148,757 cases in the year 2020.

Despite great strides in cancer treatment, the relationship between irradiation and cancer cure has unleashed another puzzle that we need to address. CT today is routine and the radiation that it spews is a matter of grave concern. According to one study, no less than 5 percent of all future cancers may emerge from exposure to medical imaging ! This vital test protocol needs to be in place and judiciously used. There is epidemiologic evidence to demonstrate that a single CT scan exposure may be cancer causing.

The current issue explores the various facets and issues associated with cancer. This includes lymphoma which comes with no less than 60 subtypes, each with different genetic characteristics that responds differently to standard therapies. RGCON 2014 is all about the best minds in lymphoma research gathering on 15 and 16 of February.

Surely, we are on the verge of winning some of the cancer battles but victory seems to be elusive. The ubiquitous pink ribbon is well understood and the ban on tobacco is evident but the advocacy and awareness campaigns need to spread to other cancers that are engulfing us.

Dr Ravi Gupta
ravi.gupta@elets.in

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