Global cancer expert, Tracey Connor, in Nigeria, Speaks on early prevention of the 'killer disease''

*A special Health report by Mike Cerutti Osagie, @ Victoria Island, Lagos, Nigeria

Cancer.. The six letter word or better still killer disease is globally rated as one of  the most deadly killer on earth as it respects or regard no one, be you billionaire  or pauper on street

Many Africans in search of the best treatment often fly out from Africa to the western world like America, far East Asia or Europe for the best of best treatment, but with the berth of a world class centre called lakeshore in Lagos, the number of people heading abroad is bound to reduce, a survey has shown

And determined to reduce the rate of the deadly spread of cancer in Nigeria and Africa in general, lakeshore recent fly brought into the country a world class cancer expert to speak and educate on ways the deadly diseases can be curtailed

That figure is non other  DR  Tracey  O’Connor,  a MD  at  Roswell Park Cancer Institute and an
Associate Professor, Department of Medicine
School of Medicine and Biomedical Sciences, State University of New York at Buffalo.
A cancer expert, her  areas of Expertise includes but not limited to
Breast cancer
Special Interests:
Novel treatments for breast cancer
Psychological impact of breast cancer
Supportive care therapies for patients with advanced disease
Survivorship issues and breast cancer

When we met her at lakeshore last week, she was quick to stressed that cancer does not equate to death sentence, it can be prevented if detected early, she spoke further in this encounter

What Can You Tell us Cancer is  ?
Group of diseases characterized by loss of control of the multiplication of cells resulting in the development of enlarging clumps of cells (tumors)

Causes of Cancer
A: Many things can cause cancer from sporadic mutations in genes, hereditary factors, Environmental Agents, Physical factors e.g. radiation and other Chemicals e.g. asbestos

Of the magnitude of Cancer figures in Nigeria
A: It is fast on the rise, and today we have about 102,079 new cancer cases per year,71,571 cancer deaths annually and Probably a marked under-estimation. It IS most pathetic g that Cancer registration in Nigeria is markedly incomplete. And the Risk of getting cancer before age 75

The most common cancer in women is Women
Breast, Cervix and Colorectal, while children are Burkitt’s Lymphoma,Leukemia Retinoblastoma and Wilms tumor, while in Men we have Prostate, Liver And Colorecta

Why is Cancer a Quick Killer in Nigeria?
A: It is quick killer in Nigeria because of of Africans attitude to lateness .Late presentation!!!
Very few screening centers before now, no center completely focused on cancer treatment Precisely why Lakeshore Cancer Center was established!

Major step towards a cost-effective alternative to travelling abroad
In truth cancer does not mean death .About 30% of all cancers are preventable, it can b e prevented by total stop of Tobacco. Alcohol, Dietary factors, Physical Inactivity, at least regular two times a week exercise. Overweight & Obesity and regular eating of fresh fruits and fish and less consumption of red meat

Please tell us about some of the deadly cancer around
A: We have quite a number of few deadly cancers like Cervical Cancer… Worldwide >273,000 Cervical Ca deaths per year 9% of female Ca deaths
Mortality rates vary 17-fold b/w diff regions mainly due to screening (Pap smear)
Main cause is HPV. Then we have Prostate Cancer – Commonest cancer in males in Nigeria
Can be detected early PSA test Rectal exam. Annual screening from 40 years
Then again, another deadly cancer is breast cancer commonest female cancer in Nigeria
Can be detected even before a lump is evident
Mammography from 40 years of age (consider 35 years)
Clinical breast exam and Self breast exam is very vital, and w e are open to help all Nigerians from all walks of life have a text on the state of their health There is also the Colon Cancer. Which is Increasing incidence in our society of late It usually Start at 50 years and Precancerous growths (polyps) can be detected and removed early

On  likely Cancer treatment
A: To a large extent, treatment Depends on stage (extent) of the cancer, the way forward includes, Surgery ,Chemotherapy Radiation therapy, Hormonal therapy and  Molecular therapy
Community Health Education can also help play a huge role to eliminate cancer, like Public Awareness. Example what cancer is? Eliminate cultural barriers to care. Lifestyle Modifications Screening and Early Detection
Dr Nwogu was quick to warn that cancer does not equate death sentence and that many who are diagnosed for cancer early still went on to survive it and the made a passionate appeal To Nigerians  and African's in general  to stop seeing cancer as another meaning for near death
Meanwhile, the lakeshore was last weekend officially opened to the public amidst pomp and pageantry

An affiliate of  Roswell Park Cancer Institute in Buffalo, NY, USA – the oldest cancer center in the world.  The centre boasts of Excellent Oncology Team, In-house Oncologists and Support staff and an ultra- modern US-based  Sub-specialty Oncologists for 2nd opinions and tele-consultations

Lakeshore Cancer Center is a Multiphase Cancer Management Plan edifice which in the first place is a 1st Phase is an Outpatient Clinic for Screening – Mammography & CT imaging, Chemotherapy, Palliative Care, Counseling and Minor surgery with a primary mission to provide compassionate cancer prevention, treatment and education

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