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Breast cancer has increased by 50% among middle-aged women in India: Study

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According to specialists at a private hospital on Friday, there has been a 50% increased in middle-aged women (aged 35-50 years) reporting cases of breast cancer in India over the last three years.

The figures are based on doctor’s OPD data, according to a statement from Indraprastha Apollo Hospitals. 

In a statement, Dr Ramesh Sarin, Senior Consultant, Surgical Oncologist at the hospital, said, “Based on our records from the past three years, we have seen that 50% of women reporting breast cancer and related indications were between the ages of 35 and 50 years.”

“With our hospital-based consultation data for breast cancer, we observed that while 53% of the reported instances are in the early stages of cancer, 47% are in the advanced stages of cancer, with a total of 20% in stage 4 and 27% in stage 3 disease,” he added.

Breast cancer is the most frequent type of cancer in women, accounting for over 30% of all cancer cases recorded in women. 

One in every 20 women is diagnosed with this illness due to a lack of information and a reluctance to seek preventive treatment.

Pandemic effects

Most women in India are diagnosed with breast cancer at an advanced stage due to a lack of awareness, and consequently must undergo all of the associated treatment regimens, which are both physically and mentally demanding. 

Furthermore, because of the pandemic’s induced reluctance to enter hospitals, many women delayed treatment or ignored early signs and symptoms, contributing to the apparent increase in cases.


“From the early stages to the advanced stages, the survival or cure rate drops dramatically. In our own series, 90% of women in stages 1 and 2 live for more than ten years, but just 30% of women in stages 3 and 5% of women in stages 4 live for more than ten years “Sarin remarked. 

“We need to increase early diagnosis up to 70%-80% by making women aware of the early signs and symptoms of breast cancer in order to achieve a greater cure rate with good disease treatment.”

Early ageing

Early ageing could be caused by defective genes acquired from parents or a close family history of breast or ovarian cancer.

Limiting or reducing physical activity, as well as rising obesity and smoking, are all factors that increase the chance of getting breast cancer in young female. 

Excessive alcohol use and oral contraceptives are also linked to an increased risk of breast cancer in younger women.

Examination of breast cancer awareness among Indian female: Cancer literacy or awareness deficit?


Breast cancer is the most common female cancer in the world, including India, where advanced stages at diagnosis, as well as increased incidence and fatality rates, make cancer literacy in female critical. 


On bibliographic databases such as MEDLINE, Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews, Cumulative Index to Nursing and Allied Health (CINAHL), and SCOPUS, a structured literature search employing combination keywords was conducted.

Through December 2014, searches were limited to studies published in English language peer-reviewed journals in India.



A total of 7066 female between the ages of 15 and 70 exhibited varying levels of awareness of risk variables such as family history (13–58%), reproductive history (1–88%), and obesity (11–51%). 

Over an eight-year period (2005–2013), risk factor literacy did not increase. Nurses indicated improved awareness levels for risk variables such as family history (40.8–98%), reproductive history (21–90%), and obesity (34–6%) on average, albeit this was still variable. 

The stronger risk determinants did not always have higher degrees of awareness.


Regardless of their socioeconomic or educational level, Indian female have low cancer literacy when it comes to breast cancer risk factors, according to our study.

To increase cancer literacy in India, there is an urgent need for national and state-level awareness programmes involving many stakeholders from society and the health system.



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