BUJUMBURA March 2nd (ABP) – The Ministry of Public Health and the Fight against AIDS, together with its partners, organized in Bujumbura on Thursday February 28, 2019, a day of awareness raising on cancer and the promotion of healthy lives.

In his opening speech, the Permanent Secretary of the Ministry, Mr. Jean-Baptiste Nzorironkankuze, said that in Burundi, cancer registries are not yet available. He explains that there are no hospital statistics on the prevalence of cancers. But since the Pathology Anatomy Laboratory at Kamenge University Hospital (CHUK) is the only diagnostic institution, he pointed out that cancers escape the routine recording of data. He reported that 5% of deaths in the country are due to cancer, according to estimates by the International Cancer Research Center (ICRC), indicating that women are the most affected compared to others, because of the cervical cancer (1429 new cases), which is the most common, followed by breast cancer (696 new cases) and esophagus cancer with 209 new cases.

The most common cancers in men, Nzorironkankuze continued to say, are of three types, namely cancers of the prostate, esophagus and sarcoma. He took that opportunity to appeal to people to be committed to fighting this burden for the family of the patient, but also for the country. He also said that prevention is the easiest way to fight cancer, otherwise the treatment is very expensive.

Dr. Juma Ndereye, who gave a lot of details about cervical cancer, listed three ways of treating this type of cancer, including the combination of surgery with chemotherapy and radiotherapy. He further pointed out that of those three means, only surgery can be done in Burundi, while appealing to the people to stop smoking tobacco, stop to take the excess alcohol, because these are factors of risk for cancer.

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