Cancer incidence in Chernobyl-affected Ukrainian regions three times higher – doctors
The cancer incidence in the regions of Ukraine most affected by the Chernobyl NPP disaster exceeds the average Ukrainian level twice and sometimes even thrice.
Kyiv Chernihiv, Vinnytsia, Rivne, Zhytomyr and Volyn regions are among such. The data are taken from the recent study of scientists of the National Cancer Institute.
The incidence of thyroid cancer, especially among women, is three times higher in these regions. The number of male patients with kidney cancer in Vinnytsia and Chernihiv regions has grown by 2.5 times.
“Cancer incidence grows throughout Ukraine,” says Olena Kolesnik, the National Cancer Institute director. “The increase in cancer incidence is a worldwide trend, however, we are seeing a significant increase in particular forms especially in the regions which were most affected by the Chernobyl disaster.”
Oncologists annually register more than 130,000 new cancer cases among the adult population. The number of women and men with this diagnosis does not differ significantly: 388 men and 359 women per 100,000 people in 2014.
Most often, Ukrainian die from cancer in Zaporizhzhia, Kirovohrad and Sumy regions.
In general, the scientists from the National Cancer Institute recorded an increase in mortality in eight regions of Ukraine and Kyiv. Exceeding the average in mortality was registered in 11 regions of Ukraine.
“The government needs to change not only the national system of treatment of cancer patients but also to develop an entirely new system of detection of the disease in its early stages,” says Andriy Beznosenko, chief medical officer of the National Cancer Institute. “When the disease is detected in its early stages, a full recovery can be achieved in 85-90%. So worldwide annual screening for cancer is a key to early detection of disease and high level of recovery.”
According to the National Cancer Institute study, cancer of the respiratory tract (trachea, bronchi, lungs) mostly hits Ukrainian men while breast cancer is most common type in women. Stomach cancer ranks second.
The highest survival rates from intractable cancers have been recorded in Kyiv, Volyn region and Odesa, the lowest ones – in Chernivtsi and Vinnytsia regions.
The average 5-year survival rate in the European Union is 49.4%, while in Ukraine it equals 31.2%.