High Body Mass Index or BMI, improper or unbalanced diet, inactive lifestyle and smoking are among factors that contribute to the rising number of cancer patients in the country. Within a 5-year period starting from 2014, the number of people suffering from cancer showed an increase. According to Statistics of Brunei Darussalam Cancer Register 2018, Colorectal Cancer is highest among males while breast cancer is the highest among females.
In 2018, colorectal cancer, breast cancer, lung cancer, liver cancer, prostate cancer and corpus uterus cancer were among the highest in number in the country.
In the last 5 years, the number of cancer patients in the country increased by 17 percent. The risk of a male suffering cancer within his lifetime is 27 percent or one in four persons, while the risk for females is 29 percent or three in one.
Cancer can affect anyone regardless of age. The country youngest confirmed cancer patient suffered the disease since birth. However, most of the cases affect senior citizens who are 50 years old and above. Cancer can be treated if detected at the early stage. The early symptoms include drastic weight loss, frequent tiredness or fatigue and reduced appetite.
A cancer patient who has been cured for 8 years, 60-year-old Dayang Hajah Aminah binti Haji Momin shared that on knowing she had cancer, she was patient and turned totally to Allah the Mighty Creator.
Various efforts are being or have been implemented by the Ministry of Health to tackle the chronic disease. They include Cancer Examination Programme and Breast Cancer Examination Programme. Recently, the Ministry of Health collaborated with Pantai Jerudong Specialist Centre, PJSC particularly in Early Detection and Cancer Prevention Services, EDCP. A third of the cancer diseases can be prevented by controlling the major risk factors through a healthy lifestyle. Proactive measures can also be taken to detect the disease including screening for cancer at the early stage.
Source: Radio Television Brunei