Tobacco related cancer higher among men in Nagaland: NCRP data

Cancer cases expected to rise to 15.7 lakh by 2025 in India 

Bangalore, August 20 (MExN): The relative proportion of cancers associated with the use of tobacco in Nagaland was 39.3% and 11.5% in males and females respectively, according to the recent National Cancer Registry Programme Report (NCRP) 2020. 

Nagaland registered 2395 cancer cases from 2012-2016 while mortality was 417, indicating a mortality incidence (MI) of 17.4% in the state, informed the report released by the Indian Council of Medical Research and the National Centre for Disease Informatics and Research on August 18. 

However, the incidence of both cancer and mortality was higher in males than in females. 1403 cases and 298 deaths were related to males against 992 cases and 119 deaths respectively for female cases during the assessed period. 

In India, the highest MI in the country was reported at Barshi Rural in Maharashtra with overall 67.2%.

Usages of any form of tobacco were leading causes of cancer in the North-eastern region of the country with higher proportions in men.

Cancer hypopharynx was common site of cancer associated with use of tobacco in the North Eastern region (26.5%) among men, the report said, while cancer oesophagus was most common among women (34.1%) in the region. 

East Khasi Hills district in Meghalaya had the highest Age Adjusted Incidence Rates (AARs) of tobacco related cancers (161.3 in males and 58.1 in females) in India. AARS are summary measures adjusted for differences in age distributions.

In 2020,  3.7 lakh  or 27.1% of the total cancer burden in India is estimated to be tobacco related.

Most common type 
Nagaland had the highest AARs of cancer nasopharynx when compared with Non- Asian countries both in males (14.4 per 100,000) and females (6.5 per 100,000).

 Nasopharyngeal cancer is a rare type of head and neck cancer which starts in the upper part of the throat, behind the nose, designated medically as the nasopharynx. 

In the head and neck related cancer among males, Nagaland was ranked 4th making upto 39.4% of the overall cancer cases among men with 553 cases. In females, Nagaland ranked 7th with 146 cases, indicating a 14.7% incidence rate.

At sixth in India, another common case in Nagaland was stomach cancer among both men and women with 12.6 and 11.3 per 100,000 incidence rate respectively across all PBCRs.

The leading site of cancer among females in Nagaland was Cancer Cervix Uteri ranked 13th among the number of cases with 163 registered cases.  

Nagaland also ranked 29th in the number of cases registered for breast cancer with 121 cases. The 12.2% of the overall cancer cases in the state was related to breast cancer.

Risk factor 
Meanwhile, the report said that the median age of diagnosing cancer in Nagaland was 51 years, and the percentage was highest in the 45-54 age group at 26.9% followed by 20.6% in the 55-74 age bracket. 

The cumulative risk of developing cancer of any site in 0-74 years of age as per the PBCRs in Nagaland were 1 in 7 for males and 1 in 10 for females, the report added. 

The report also estimated cancer cases in the country in 2020 at 13.9 lakhs and said that it is likely to increase to 15.7 lakhs by 2025, based on current trends based on information PBCRs and HBCRs data.

Data Source
The NCRP contains 5 years (2012-2016) data from the network of 28 Population Based Cancer Registries (PBCRs) and 58 Hospital Based Cancer registries (HBCRs) in India working under the National Cancer Registry Programme (NCRP).

The data for Nagaland was based on the PBCR covering Kohima and Dimapur districts.

Naga Hospital Authority, Kohima was the PBCR for Nagaland, with Dr V Khamo, Head of the Department of Pathology as Principal Investigator and Dr Kedozeto Punyu, Head of the Department of ENT as Co-Principal Investigator.

The population for Nagaland has been estimated using 1991 and 2011 census to get the mid-year population of 2012-2016.

The full report can be accessed at