Third Main Cause of Death in Qatar
Cancer has been identified as the third main cause of death in Qatar, accounting for 12% of total deaths, with 23.8% females and 8.7% males dying of the disease.
In 2009, the incidence rate for cancer in Qatar was 47.5 new cases per 100,000 people, and is expected to rise due to the increase in population.
Tobacco use, alcohol use, unhealthy diet and physical inactivity are the main cancer risk factors worldwide.
Chronic infections from hepatitis B (HBV), hepatitis C virus (HCV) and some types of Human Papilloma Virus (HPV) are leading risk factors for cancer in low- and middle-income countries while cervical cancer, which is caused by HPV, is a leading cause of cancer death among women in low-income countries.
“The numbers are increasing especially breast and colorectal cancers among females, and the incidence of bladder and lung cancers are increasing among males. The age of increasing risk is 34 years and above for males and 25 years and above for females – this also should define the age of screening for breast cancer,” Supreme Council of Health Public Health Department’s Health Promotion and Non-communicable Diseases manager Dr Alanoud al-Thani said yesterday.
She was making a presentation as part of an event marking the World Cancer Day organised by the Public Health Department with the participation of other organisations that are working on cancer or providing support for patients of the disease.
World Cancer Day falls on February 4 every year to promote ways to ease the global burden of cancer and preventing cancer and raising quality of life for cancer patients are recurring themes.
The day is being observed this year under the theme: “Together it is Possible”.
“The most common cancers among Qatari males are prostate, bone marrow, lung, colon and liver, while female Qataris suffer mostly from breast cancer, uterus cancer, colon, liver and thyroid gland cancers,” Dr Alanoud al-Thani highlighted.
According to her, the top 10 most common cancers in Qatar last year were breast cancer (147 cases), bone marrow (65), colon (54), prostate gland (54), lung (36), thyroid gland (35) lymph node (27), kidney (26), and urinary bladder (26).
Dr Alanoud al-Thani mentioned that the prevalence of the disease was also increasing because more than one-third of Qatari cancer patients were in the advanced stages.
“During early to mid adulthood, Qatari females showed slightly higher incidence of cancer while during the age group 55 to 59 years and above 70 years, males appeared to have slightly higher incidence of cancer compared to females,” she explained. – By Noimot Olayiwola