Emirates Oncology Society today announced the successful conclusion of a series of events designed to raise public awareness regarding colorectal cancer. The latest campaign is part of the society’s ongoing efforts to educate UAE citizens and residents about healthy practices for the maintenance of colon health.
“Colorectal cancer is the second most common cause of death in the UAE, after breast cancer, according to national cancer statistics issued in 2017,” said Dr Humaid bin Harmal Al-Shamsi, President of Emirates Oncology Society and Director of Oncology at Burjeel Cancer Institute. “Colorectal cancer usually affects people over the age of 60, but in a recent study it was found that 20% of people infected in the UAE are under 40. Most detected cases are in advanced stages, and many are found to be acute.”
Dr Al-Shamsi added that the recent campaign was designed to address the reluctance of most people to discuss cancer and related issues. The awareness initiative was focused on empowering individuals to recognize early-warning signs of colorectal cancer.
“By delving deep into the topic of colon cancers, we arm patients with the knowledge to identify early symptoms, which greatly enhances their chances of making a full recovery,” he said.
The messaging campaign was directed at family medicine practices, through seminars and virtual workshops, and was aimed at informing the public of how vital early detection is in the effective treatment of colon cancer, which is described by experts as one of the more stealthy cancers, capable of spreading quickly and undetected throughout the digestive system.
Best health practices for the prevention of colorectal cancer include maintaining an ideal weight and exercising regularly, Dr Al-Shamsi said. Adjusting diet to include more vegetables, fruit, and fish, while reducing the intake of red meat is also advisable, he said, as is early screening for colon cancer.
Emirates Oncology Society also launched an awareness video on colorectal cancer, called “I am examining”, presented by Dr. Al-Shamsi, which was widely promoted on multiple social-media platforms.
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