Over 80 per cent of childhood cancers are curable

Dr Parinitha Gutha
February 15, 2021

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Children’s Cancers are rare compared to those in adults.

Worldwide, around 3 lakh children and adolescents are diagnosed with cancer every year and 80% of them live in developing countries.

As infectious diseases are becoming more controlled in children, cancer is emerging to be the leading cause of death after accidental deaths. 

The good news is that most of the children’s cancers are now curable, but many factors are acting against achieving this result. Because they have their uniqueness, both biologically and psychologically, they must be treated in dedicated Pediatric Cancer Units to achieve results.

Types of Childhood Cancers

More than a dozen kinds of childhood cancers and a hundred different subtypes exist. 

Blood cancers, brain cancers, and neuroblastomas account for more than half of the cancers in children.

The most common childhood cancer is Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia (ALL). In the 1950s, almost every child with ALL died. But today, about 90% of children with ALL survive.

Causes

The cause is usually unknown and not linked to any environmental or genetic factors apart from a small proportion (5%) which is caused by an inherited genetic condition.

In adults, the mutations reflect the cumulative effects of aging, long-term exposure to cancer-causing agents. However, it has been difficult to identify potential environmental causes of childhood cancer.

The analogy is that most cancers develop as a result of mutations in genes that lead to uncontrolled cell growth.

Treatment

It is important to know that Children's cancers are not always treated like adult cancers.

Children should not only survive, but thrive. To achieve this, Cancer needs to be diagnosed early and treated in dedicated Paediatric Oncology Units where the team is focused and qualified to respond to children's needs. Many individuals are not aware that this expertise exists and that many childhood cancers are handled successfully.

The types of treatment that a child with cancer receives will depend on the type of cancer and how advanced it is. Common treatments include chemotherapy, surgery, radiation, immunotherapy, and bone marrow transplantation.

What is the outlook?

Most childhood cancers are highly curable, provided prompt and effective treatment is accessible. 

In resource-rich countries, three out of four children survive (about 80%).

The Survival gap…

Unfortunately, this is not the case in India. Around 80% of children with cancer live in developing countries and more than half die. There are no cancer registries to give us accurate statistics, children are often not diagnosed, or diagnosed too late, and limited access to information and life-saving treatment. 

However, the situation is becoming more hopeful with the availability of dedicated Paediatric cancer Units providing excellent standards of care.

Children’s Cancers are curable and they are no less important than children fighting malaria, dengue, malnutrition, and other causes of death.

Let us stand up to cancer and strive to save our children!

 

Dr Parinitha Gutha is a Senior Consultant, Paediatric Oncology/Hematology at American Oncology Institute, Hyderabad

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coastaldigest.com news network
February 16,2021

Mangaluru Feb 16: Condemning the arrest of young climate activist Disha Ravi for supporting the farmers’ agitation on social media, Mangaluru MLA U T Khader said that it was the responsibility of Karnataka government to raise voice for her as she belongs to Bengaluru. 

Speaking to media persons here, the Congress leader and former minister said: “It is disgusting that BJP leaders in Karnataka defending the arrest of Bengaluru-based activist by Delhi police”

“What was the need for arresting the 21-year-old girl for social media activist? As far as I know, Toolkit is just an open document. This arrest is an assault on democracy and freedom of expression,” he said. 

Mr Khader went on to criticise Karnataka chief minister and home minister for their silence when the state’s activist is arrested by the police of another state. “It is shameful to see state government’s silence and surrender to suppression," he said.

"The motive is to silence those who stand in favour of farmers and quell the farmers' protest. The state government should come up with a clarification and break its silence over the arrest of Disha Ravi," he added.

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Agencies
February 11,2021

Image result for Former Indian envoy slams WHO for investigating origins of COVID-19 after 15 months, calls it 'tokenism'

New Delhi, Feb 11: Former High Commissioner to Canada Vishnu Prakash on Thursday slammed the World Health Organisation (WHO) for investigating the origins of coronavirus in China after 14-15 months of the incident.

Speaking to media in an interview, the former envoy said that he is "not inspired by the WHO findings under the present dispensation" and especially due to its track record amid the COVID-19 pandemic.

"The WHO did not share vital information about the pandemic. It, in fact, discouraged people from avoiding travelling. It is seen as an organisation which is somewhat politicised. I will not be very sanguine about its findings," he said on WHO's findings of the origins of COVID-19.

He further said, "The research is taking place after 14 or 15 months of the incident. So by now, in my view, it is tokenism because the ground realities would have been changed by now. At least I am not inspired by the WHO findings under the present dispensation."

Weeks after a team of World Health Organization experts launched a probe into the origin of the COVID-19 in Wuhan, the global health body on Tuesday said that there is no evidence of coronavirus circulation in any animal species in China.

Speaking at a press conference, Peter Ben Embarek, the head of the WHO mission in Wuhan, stated four hypotheses on how the virus spread but reiterated that "laboratory incident hypothesis is extremely unlikely to explain the introduction of the virus into the human population".

"It has not been possible to pinpoint any animal species as a potential reservoir for this disease, and they indicate that currently and also back in 2019 it does not look like there was the circulation of the virus in any animal species in the country," he said.

He further said that "four main hypotheses or groups of hypotheses" have been identified on how the COVID-19 virus might have introduced among the humans.

"Our initial findings suggest that introduction through an intermediary host species is the most likely passway and one that will require more studies and more specific targeted research ... The findings suggest that a laboratory incident hypothesis is extremely unlikely to explain the introduction of the virus into the human population," the WHO expert said.

Speaking on whether the virus got leaked from Wuhan's institute of virology, he said, "We also looked at Wuhan's institute of virology... the laboratory and the state of the laboratory, and it was very unlikely that anything could escape from such a place. We also know that lab incidents are, of course, extremely rare."

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News Network
February 16,2021

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Dubai, Feb 16: Wealth of millionaires and billionaires in the UAE increased by $45 billion (Dh165.15 billion) in the second half of 2020 despite Covid-19 pandemic taking toll of its economy.

Data from the New World Wealth showed that the wealth of high net worth individuals grew from $825 billion ($3 trillion) from June 2020 to $870 billion ($3.2 trillion) by the end of December 2020.

The UAE added 4,276 millionaires with a wealth of $1 million-plus and one billionaire during the six month period.

The UAE is home of 87,000 millionaires and 13 billionaires, controlling $870 billion (Dh3.2 trillion) wealth at the end of December 2020. At the end of June 2020, the UAE was home to 82,724 millionaires and 12 billionaires.

The study also found that Dubai is the richest city while UAE is the richest nation in the Mena region.

Andrew Amoils, head of research at New World Wealth, said a number of HNWIs moved to the UAE owing to its status as top safe haven in the region, high-income economy, first-class healthcare system, low tax rates, international business and luxury hub, top-class shopping malls and restaurants, top-end apartments and villas and good international schools.

It estimated that over 35,000 HNWIs have moved to the UAE between 2000 to 2020. Many of these individuals have come from India, the Middle East and Africa.

People in the UAE enjoy per capita income of $89,000 (Dh326,630) followed by Israel ($86,500), Qatar ($71,300), Saudi Arabia ($15,800), Turkey ($5,800) and Iran ($4,800).

The UAE is followed by Israel where millionaires and billionaires own $784 billion assets, followed by Saudi Arabia ($542 billion), Turkey ($482 billion), Iran ($395 billion) and Qatar ($202 billion).

The UAE is the largest wealth management centre in the region with assets under management (AuM) of approximately $110 billion, followed by Israel at $95 billion.

Most of the HNWIs have acquired wealth in the fields of finance and professional services; real estate and construction; transport and logistics; hotels and leisure; healthcare; technology and telecoms; retail and fashion; manufacturing, FMCG and Media.

Romika Fazeli, founder and managing director of Emirates World Club, said the UAE is the only country in the Middle East where all kinds of religions and cultures are welcomed and respected.

“I truly believe that as a millionaire and billionaire, you have the financial power and freedom to choose a country as your home where you live a comfortable lifestyle, considering the safety of your family, importance of work-life balance and religious freedom. Dubai is a multi-national and cultural city which makes it also one of the most metropolis cities in the world,” said Fazeli.

“When it comes to lifestyle and safety, Dubai is the best place to live a great life and second to none,” she added.

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