Lifestyle changes may cause surge in breast cancer —Oncologists

Cancer care experts have said that lifestyle changes in Nigeria and other low and middle-income countries could be one of the major factors fuelling the increasing incidence of breast cancer.

The oncologists noted that there has been an increasing incidence and mortality from breast cancer in Nigeria and other lower-resource countries over the past years, even though Nigeria and those countries have historically reported lower rates of breast cancer.

According to the oncologists, while approximately half of the breast cancers develop in women who have no identifiable risk factors other than being female and being over 40 years, the surge in breast cancer cases and its mortality has been linked to lifestyle changes.

They noted that breast cancer is undoubtedly the most common form of cancer afflicting women, adding that some common causes of breast cancer include a family history of it, being overweight, and excessive alcohol consumption.

Others, they said, include reproductive factors like late menopause, never having children, or having one’s first child after the age of 30.

They, however, stressed that breast cancer shouldn’t be a death sentence, noting that access to early and proper diagnosis, as well as treatment, could help reduce mortality from the health condition.

Speaking with our correspondent, the experts, United Kingdom-based Clinical Oncologist and Clinical Fellow, Proton Beam Therapy, The Christie NHS Foundation Trust, Dr. Kenneth Oguejiofor, and another UK-based Consultant Medical Oncologist, University Hospitals of Leicester NHS Trust and Honorary Senior Lecturer, Leicester Cancer Research Centre, Dr. Olubukola Ayodele, said it has become necessary to address the factors fuelling the rise in the incidence of breast cancer particularly among black.


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