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Gallbladder cancer cases on rise in Delhi

Gallbladder cancer cases on rise in Delhi

New Delhi: Gallbladder cancer (GBC) is a rare, yet deadly cancer of the gastrointestinal tract. It is very rare is South India and yet shows an abnormally high incidence among the Delhi-NCR population. Two decades earlier, GBC used to be on the 24th among all cancer affecting men and fifth among women, however, the ranking went up to ninth and third for the two genders, respectively.

Experts from All India Institute of Medical Science believes that exact cause of spike in GBC case is not known, adding this rise of sedentary lifestyle, obesity and environmental factor, especially the river belt of both Ganga and Yamuna because of toxic waste of industires may have contributed to this worrying trend.

Hospital, Bhim Rao Ambedkar Institute Rotary Cancer, (BRAIRCH), reveals that Delhi ranks second in GBC prevalence in India with 11 cases per 1 lakh population. Kamrup district in Assam has the maximum of 17 cases per 1 lakh population and "Lucknow is considered to be an GBC capital,' said doctor. "GBC remains one of the deadliest cancers. Most cases are diagnosed very late, when surgery cannot be done, and 95 percent patients die within a year of diagnosis," Dr Raja Pramanik, Assitant Professor, Bhim Rao Ambedkar Institute Rotary Cancer, AIIMS. " Around 70 percent of the patients come to our clinic from Delhi-NCR suffering from the GBC, sadly, most of them are at the advance stage," he added.

The gallbladder is a small, pouch-like organ found underneath the liver. It stores bile, liquid produced by the liver, which helps break down fatty foods. Bile is the main source for removing toxic metabolites. "No one knows the exact reason why GBC is so common in north India. We are doing a study of genetic analysis of cancer patients from this region. It will be compared with the genes of people from other areas," oncologist added.

"GBC is closely associated with gallstones. But there are other modifiable risk factors that experts said, if reduced, can help lower the disease burden. This includes obesity, smoking, alcohol, dietary pattern and exercise," Dr Pramanik added.

He further said that the smokers have developed an increased risk of developing of GBC as compared to nonsmokers. However, a recent survey reveals that smoking increased by around 220 perecent in men and almost doubled in women. "Morever, a sedentary lifestyle and fast food, fried food is growing among urban Delhi population, especially among the young during the last years may have added to the GBC risk.

According to a study published

by AIIMS, the researcher have pointed that excretion of environmental carcinogens in bile inceases the consequence of GBC.

"The main source of drinking water for Delhi is Ganga and Yamuna. Both these rivers are now contaminated with industrial waste and contain heavy chemicals such as chromium and lead. The Indian government is taking steps to improve water quality of these rivers, but these plans are still on paper and awaiting implementation," the study said.

Yogesh Kant

Yogesh Kant

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