Dhaka – The number of new breast cancer cases in Bangladesh is 17,781 every year. A total of 8,396 (15.4 of cancer death in women)) women die each year from breast cancer, according to GLOBOCAN 2008 (statistics given by IARC, International Agency for Research on Cancer).
Sources said breast cancer is the most frequent cancer among women with an estimated 1.38 million new cancer cases diagnosed in 2008 (23 per cent of all cancers), and ranks second overall (10.9 per cent of all cancers).
It is now the most common cancer both in developed and developing regions with around 690000 new cases estimated in each region.
Talking to The Independent, Dr. Md. Habibullah Talukder Ruskin, Coordinator Bangladesh Breast Cancer Awareness Forum, said breast cancer is the leading cancer among the women in Bangladesh
He said hospital cancer registry report 2008-2010 reveals that breast cancer is the leading cancer among the women (26 per cent). Among both sexes, its position is the second (11.7 per cent).
“Mortality can be reduced if appropriate measures can be taken to detect breast cancer at an early stage. Awareness and screening can save thousands of life,” he added.
Habibullah Talukder, who is also an Associate Professor and Head of Cancer Epidemiology National Institute of Cancer Research and Hospital, said mammogram, clinical breast examination (CBE) and breast self examination (BSE) are recognized screening methods for breast cancer screening.
“Considering the social economic condition of our country, the cost and unavailability of mammogram at district levels we recommend strongly for breast self examination. A woman will examine both breasts by her own once in a month regularly. If she feels any abnormality, she will undergo examination by a doctor or health professional. We believe dissemination of this information and mass awareness can improve breast cancer situation in Bangladesh,” he observed.
Globally, October month is observed as breast cancer awareness month.
Bangladesh Breast Cancer Awareness Forum is also observing this month for last few years. Significant improvement has been achieved in this issue, but we should work more involving every segment of our people to make it a social movement, Habibullah Talukder said.
Considering this, this year the Forum is going to observe ‘Breast Cancer Awareness Day’ on October 10 (Thursday), which will be continued to be observed on the 2nd Thursday of October every year.
‘Bangladesh Breast Cancer Awareness Forum’ has been formed, to make this event meaningful to raise awareness on breast cancer. We request our people to wear a pink dress or a pink ribbon on this day.
As part of the programme, a ‘pink rally’ will start from Shahbagh,( in front of National Museum) to Doel Chattar at 7.30 am.
At 4 pm. an exceptional awareness programme will be held at Dhanmondi Rabindra Sarobar where experts, breast cancer survivors and social leaders will speak on breast cancer and fight against it.
Writer and cancer surviver Kazi Rozi, eminent oncologist Prof. MA Hai, Director of National Institute of Cancer Research Prof. Sheikh Golam Mostafa, Prof. Sabera Khatun and Professor Ashrafunnesa , preventive oncologist Dr. Md. Habibullah Talukder, among others, will speak on the occasion. – Staff Reporter