FAISALABAD - Pakistan has the highest rate of breast cancer cases in Asia as 40,000 women die of the fatal disease annually in the country whereas one out of nine women in the country is at risk of the disease, disclosed speakers at a seminar held in connection with World Cancer Day.

It was arranged by the Directorate of Medical Sciences, Government College University Faisalabad, on the direction of GCUF Vice Chancellor Dr Zakir Hussain, in collaboration with Higher Education Commission and a private media group. The theme of the moot was 'Dispel Myths and Misconception about Cancer'.

Faculty of Sciences and Technology Dean Dr Naureen Aziz Qureshi was the chief guest while Director Dr Riaz Hussain was the key speaker. Dr Naureen Aziz addressing the participants said early diagnosis increases a patient's survival chance by more than 90 percent. She stressed the need for launching an awareness campaign to address the issue at the national level and to educate the women to have their medical examination at least once a month. She also told the audience that healthy food free of fat and exercise are one of the precautions against it.

She said that diseases were increasing in young girls in the homeland. She said that prevalence of breast cancer was the highest among the other kinds of cancer in Pakistan with 38 percent. She said that cancer was the silent killer as it starts painless. When the disease spreads, the patient starts suffering pain, she added.

Dr Riaz said that one out of the nine women in Pakistan was at the risk of the breast cancer. He said that if anyone's ancestor was the victim of any type of cancer, he/she has the disease risk ten times more than other people. He said that breast feeding helps reduce the risk of the breast cancer. He also suggested setting up of breast clinics at the every hospitals to control the disease.

He also stressed the need for maintaining the documentation and kicking off research work in line with the circumstances in Pakistan. Dr Kiran Fatima said that cancer is a leading cause of death worldwide and accounted for 7.6 million deaths (around 13% of all deaths) in 2008. Each year on February 4, the World Health Organisation supports International Union against Cancer to promote ways to ease the global burden of cancer, she said.

She said usage of vegetables and fruit must be enhanced in the routine life and the preserved meat should be avoided to lowering down the impact of cancer. Samiya said that excessive use of preserved meat was also responsible for putting its user at the risk of cancer. She said coffee, tea and smoking also become causes of cancer. 

Dr Muhmmad Asif Saleem stressed the need to make joint efforts to aware the masses to cope with the disease as the country was the biggest victim of the disease in the Asia. Advisor HR Shiekh Akram, QEC Director Dr Zubair Siddique and other notables were present.