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[REPRESENTATIONAL IMAGE] An increasing number of women in India in the age group of 20-50 years are suffering from cancerReuters

In India an increasing number of women under the age of 50 are suffering from cancer, doctors have said. Nearly 46 percent of cancer cases among women in India have been found in the age group of 20-50 years, the experts said.

Breast and cervical cancers were found to be the most common types of cancer among the young Indian women.

Nearly 1,22,844 women are diagnosed with cervical cancer and 67,477 die from the disease every year, according to the HPV India Report 2015 (HPV R-2015). Cervical cancer ranks as the second most common cancer among women between 15 and 44 years of age, the report said.

"Two per cent of the Indian women suffering from cancer are in 20 to 30 years age group, 16 per cent are in 30 to 40, 28 per cent are in 40 to 50 age group. So, almost 46 per cent women patients are below 50,"  Sameer Kaul, senior consultant of Surgical Oncology at Indraprastha Apollo Hospital, Delhi, was quoted by the Indo-AsianNewsService as saying.

He added that a matter of concern is that an increasing number of female cancer patients are in the age group of 25-40 years.

Experts have also said that often, the conservative nature of the Indian society that does not allow women to talk about their private body parts leads to the poor diagnosis of such cases.

"Discomfort with the process of diagnosis and treatment is an additional concern. Research conducted in other countries suggests women perceive mammography exams as uncomfortable, and these feelings are shared by women in India too," Kaul said.

These women, according to the doctors, turn to doctors only when their cancers have reached an advanced stage.

"By the time people consult doctors, their cancer is in the advanced stage. A wound that does not heal, cough, stubborn fever, lumps, change in any mole and bleeding, etc., are generally the first warning signs that the body gives. So, one should be prompt in seeing the doctor," Priyanka Sachdev, oncologist at Safdarjung hospital, told IANS.

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