Tererayi: Cancer Cases Increase in Zimbabwe!

Virimayi, one of the patients the ECCT is supporting (pictured right) with his mother (seated left) & his sister, Tanyaradzwa (standing) whose school fees we have been paying this year.

by Francis Nyachowe, ECCT Field Officer

HIGH cases of cancer continue to be recorded around the country with the latest statistics showing that cases have escalated by six percent.

The latest statistics released by the Zimbabwe Cancer Registry show that there is a steady increase in reported cases and cervical cancer accounts for most cases. In 2011, recorded cases were 5 553,while in 2012 cases stood at 6 107 before escalating to 6 548 in 2013.

“A record 6 548 new cases of cancer representing an increase of 6,7 percent was recorded. Of the new cases, 2 777 were recorded from males and 3 771 were accounted to females,” said Mr Erick Chokunoga, the Zimbabwe Cancer Registry registrar.

He also said that cervical cancer continues to dominate reported cases and deaths.

“The most frequently occurring cancers on all races in the country are cervical cancer with 18 percent, Kaposi sarcoma (10 percent), oesophagul (9 percent), prostate cancer (7 percent), non-Hodgkin lymphoma (6 percent), colorectal cancer (4 percent) and breast cancer (7 percent).

Clement, an ECCT volunteer with the lovely 16 yr old Takudzwa who we supported, but sadly passed away from Ewing Sarcoma in 2011 .

The leading causes of the deaths were cervical cancer with 13 percent, prostate cancer (9 percent), Kaposi sarcoma (8 percent), non-Hodgkin lymphoma (7 percent), primary liver cancer (8 percent) and breast cancer has seven percent.”

Mr Chokunonga also said Harare and Bulawayo recorded the highest number of new reported cases. Harare recorded 2 459 cancer cases, Bulawayo 841, Manicaland 364, Masvingo 319, Mashonaland Central 291 Mashonaland East 815, Mashonaland West 359, Midlands 359, Matabeleland North 161 and the least was Matabeleland South with 132 reported cases.

Statistics indicate that the leading cause of cancer among men is prostate cancer 25.6 percent, followed by Kaposi sarcoma with 11.3 percent, non-Hodgkin lymphoma (NHL) 6.7 percent, oesophagus 4.5 percent, eye 4.6 percent, liver 4.4 percent, stomach 4.2 percent, non-melanoma skin cancer 2.4 percent, lung 4.8 percent and colon 2.6 percent.

Mr Chokunonga added that HIV-related cancers continue to dominate in both males and females. He also added that although childhood cancers (0-14) are a rare condition, the incidence in Zimbabwe are rather high. Child cancers accounted for more than three percent of the cancers recorded.

We hope that this has given you some insight into the rising rate of cancer in Zimbabwe and why we all need to join together in spreading awareness and helping not only those who fall victim to cancer, but their families as well.


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