Currently, cancer is the most common cause of death in England and Wales. According to recent reports, there has been a massive increase in people battling cancer in Manchester in the past year, from 5,000 to 63,941 people. Dr Ziv Amir, Honorary Professor of Cancer Survivorship discussed more about the causes of cancer and whether it’s a good news.
The Biological process of cancer is uncontrollable growth of something.
In his interview, Dr Amir said that “we don’t really know exactly what is the real cause of cancer at the moment”. Causes of cancer are different for each kind of disease such as breast cancer, lung cancer, stomach cancer etc. which are caused by many different factors. According to him, cancer is quite common in elderly people, however, the reason behind the cause of cancer within elderly people is still unknown.
The second factor causing a rise in cancer rates in Manchester is lifestyle. People who tend to smoke, have huge amount of alcohol consumption, have a bad diet and those who are exposed to sun are more likely to be diagnosed with cancer. However, these choices are caused by socio-economic factors. Dr Amir stated that people from lower backgrounds are at high risk of cancer because of their poor lifestyle choices, while people from middle class background are at least risk, as their lifestyle choices are better.
Ethnic minority groups are also at high risk of cancer rates because of their poor dieting, lack of exercise and obviously socio-economic factors. In fact, some parts of Manchester have higher cancer rates than others, with Trafford and Stockport having the highest rates, and Central Manchester having the lowest rates of cancer. The map below shows how different regions have different rates of cancer.
Dr Amir discussed that new technology can be another possible cause behind the increase in cancer rates in Manchester. There is no evidence whether technology is harmful or not, however, it’s debatable because technology companies do not want research to be carried out.
On the positive side, Dr Amir stated that more people are living with cancer, rather than dying compared to the past, which is good news as it shows people are living longer. He also mentioned that cancer prevention strategies have increased, the NHS is trying its best to make people aware of the first signs of cancer through the media and GPs.
Lastly, Dr Amir stated that cancer presentation strategies have increased as people are being diagnosed in their early stages of cancer, leading to many people battling cancer and living ten to twenty years after being treated. While in the past people will only survive for a year or two maximum. He stated that more and more schemes of detecting cancer are available now. An example of this is mammography for breast cancer which has detected many women at an early stage. In fact, breast cancer has the best rate of survivorship.
If you want to find out more information about cancer rates in Manchester, click here.