Just because you have been declared free of cancer does not mean that you can cool your heels, for cancers are known to hit back even after decades, experts have warned people.
These warnings were issued on the occasion of the Childhood Cancer Awareness Day by eminent doctors who took part in a panel discussion at the All India Institute Of Medical Sciences (AIIMS) yesterday. In a keynote address delivered on the occasion, Prof D K Gupta said that cancer patients need to undergo regular check-ups since it is very difficult to successfully treat advanced cases of cancer. He said that commonly, patients came very late to their doctor after the worst symptoms presented themselves. This was especially true of stomach cancer. Delay in cases of cancer can be fatal, he warned. As far as the cancers in childhood were concerned, Dr Gupta said that parents need to play a vital role in ensuring that children are not affected as a result of negligence on their part. Cancer, he said, can occur at any age and does not even spare infants.
Prof Richard Azizkhan, Director Children Hospital, Cincinnati, US also addressed the gathering of NGOs, patients, doctors and parents of children suffering from cancer and said that the problem of a delayed diagnosis was even more prevalent in the United States. Cancer was the third largest killer of kids in America after trauma and homicide, he said. Even though modern techniques made it easier to detect and treat cancer, the number of cases has shot up alarmingly, he concluded.