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Updated: February 5, 2013 00:55 IST

With support, we can beat it: cancer survivors

Special Correspondent
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Cancer survivors meet at Narayana Hrudayalaya

Cancer knows no boundaries. It affects people of all ages across socioeconomic strata. With the incidence of the disease rising at an alarming rate in India, doctors are concerned about the myths and misconceptions about the disease.

The focus of this year’s World Cancer Day is on dispelling damaging myths and misconceptions about cancer under the tagline ‘Cancer – Did you know?’

To mark the day, Narayana Hrudayalaya’s Mazumdar-Shaw Cancer Centre organised a survivors’ meet on Monday.

Participating in the meet, Sangeeta Metaiah (34), a dentist from Mysore, said she had managed to fight breast cancer after a year’s treatment. Stressing on the crucial role of family support, Dr. Metaiah said: “My hair, eyelashes and eyebrows were falling off. I had gone into depression. I used to forget whom I met and spoke to during the day. My husband played an important role in reminding me every time I forgot something. Family support has kept me going ever since I was diagnosed with the disease.”

Sajith N., another dental surgeon from Kochi, who got treated for cancer of the tongue at Mazumdar Shaw Cancer Centre, narrated how he too had assumed that it was the end of the world for him. “However, with proper treatment, I returned to work in a month.”

Moni Abraham Kuriakose, professor and director of Surgical Oncology at Mazumdar-Shaw Cancer Centre, said nearly 70 per cent of cancers can be prevented if people followed a healthy lifestyle.

Stressing on the importance of annual health check-ups, Dr. Kuriakose said a low-fat, fibre-rich diet such as fresh fruits and vegetables was a must to prevent the disease. Paul Salins, vice-president and Medical Director of the centre, also spoke.

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