Cervical and breast cancer are the two leading cancers in Cambodia, a US-based doctor said Thursday, but they are both preventable with early detection.
Cervical cancer can be prevented by a vaccine give to girls and boys at ages 11 or 12, and through a proper pap smear schedule.
Breast cancer, meanwhile, can be beaten in its early stages by detection through mammograms or self-examination, said Taing Tek Hong, a Florida-based physician, as a guest on “Hello VOA.”
To prevent cervical cancer women should start pap smears at age 21, or within three years of first having sexual intercourse, he said. The pap smear should be repeated every two years, through the age of 30, and every three years thereafter.
If detected early, cervical cancer can be removed through surgery, he said.
Mammograms can prevent breast cancer. They should be undertaken every three years for women under the age of 40, and every year thereafter, Taing Tek Hong said.
A woman may also self-examine, looking for changes in her breasts that can be brought to the attention of a healthcare provider. Breast cancer can be cured through surgery, including the breast removal.
Taing Tek Hong said there is no conclusive evidence that roll-on deodorant can lead to breast cancer. However, products with preservatives called “parabens” can mimic estrogen, possibly promoting the disease.
Another cancer facing Cambodians is of the colon, the doctor said. Rectal bleeding, constipation, diarrhea and abdominal pain can signal the disease. In its advanced stage, the cancer can lead to weight loss, fatigue and anemia, he said.
Detected early, colon cancer can be cured through surgery, he said. Preventative measures include a colonoscopy after the age of 50 for both men and women, and every 10 years after that.