Division of Preventive Oncology
- About us
The division of preventive oncology at Nepal Cancer Hospital and Research Center (NCHRC) works towards supporting the vision of the institute prevention and highest quality cancer care through education, training and innovative research programs. We believe that the available knowledge, skills and technology can be greatly used towards cancer prevention and control benefiting individuals and people at large.
- Faculty and Staff
- The division is headed by Dr. Yaso Vardan Pradhan, previous Director General of Department of Health Services (DoHS), Nepal. With a long history of service as a Senior Public Health Expert at the Ministry of Health and Population (MoH&P), Dr. Pradhan has received several national and international awards.
- His contribution in national and international health care service has been well acknowledged particularly in reducing child mortality through strengthening immunization services.
- Dr. Murari Man Shrestha is a senior medical epidemiologist holding a position of deputy director and supports the activity of the division of preventive oncology in planning and execution of cancer prevention programs. He has served for several years in Nepal, and abroad. He is member of clinical governance, infection prevention and control (IPC) committee, member secretary of hospital research board (HRB) and medical record subcommittee.
- In addition, the division of preventive oncology is supported by the executive chairman and the medical director. The division works in close coordination and support from diagnostic and clinical departments of the hospital.
The division of preventive oncology-NCHRC provides cancer education and awareness programs, cancer screening and general health checkup programs for general public. Such programs are intended to prevent future cancer and detect cancers in early stages, so that it can be cured or controlled. We aim to conduct following programs:
- School-based health/cancer education and awareness programs,
- Cancer awareness programs targeting high-risk groups and population,
- Early detection and early treatment through general health check-up, cancer screening including training of health workers,
- Education and referral of cancer cases including advanced cancer cases to support their treatment needs and palliative care for better quality of life (QOL),
- Use available technologies, innovations including vaccines to prevent cancers that can be prevented,
- Conduct research and studies that contribute to prevention and cancer control,
- Support national cancer control program of the government of Nepal.
Frequently Asked Questions on Cancer Prevention
What is cancer?
Human body is built of millions of cells as structural units. These cells divide when it needs to divide and stop its division in controlled physiological process to keep our body fit and maintained. When cell division goes out of control and do not stop, it results in formation of mass or tumor. These tumors are called the cancers. Cancers can grow in any part of the body and interfere with the normal function of the part or organ where it develops. Cancer is not one disease but a category of diseases. For example, breast cancer, lung cancer, stomach cancer, liver cancer, bladder cancer, cancer of uterine cervix and many others as it can occur in any part of the body.
Are all tumors/lumps cancer?
No, all tumors or lumps are not cancer. Tumors that do not grow uncontrolledly are not cancers and such growth or lumps are called “Benign Tumors”. In contrary, tumors that grow uncontrolledly and spread to other parts of the body or have the potentiality to spread are cancers, also called “Malignant Tumors”.
Where to consult if there is a lump in the body?
It is very important to have a good consultation that can guide a person appropriately. Initially, one should consult a doctor who is accessible. For further investigation and treatment one should attend a cancer treatment center without losing much time. Reaching a cancer center saves time and allows timely treatment.
What causes cancer in human?
Generally, exposure to cancer-causing agents also called “carcinogens” cause cancers. Such carcinogens are found in environment where we live. The longer the duration of exposure the higher the chance of developing cancers. The exposure to carcinogens is also related to the lifestyle of an individual, meaning food habit, quality of air we breathe and various chemical preparations we use. For example, smoking and tobacco use in various forms cause cancer of lung, mouth and other parts of the body. Similarly, harmful chemicals, inappropriate use of insecticides and pesticides in plants and food grains increases risk of cancer. About 90% of cancers are caused such environmental factors or external factors. Therefore, the polluted environment, consumption of unhealthy food and lifestyle including excessive exposure to ultraviolet ray can cause cancer. The high-fat, low-fiber diet and environmental pollution may play a role in causation of about one- third of all cancers. Cigarettes and tobacco use in various forms cause vast majority of cancers of the lungs, bladder, pancreas, mouth, larynx, esophagus, and kidney. Few cancers such as retinoblastoma (eye cancer) and in a small portion of the breast and ovarian cancers seem to be caused due to inherited factor/genetic factors, which constitute about 10% of all cancers. Some individuals develop cancer while others do not, is also a question people do ask. There is no exact answer to this question however; variation of exposure of carcinogens, biological variation/immunity status of an individual may have some role and this is an area of research.
How is cancers diagnosed?
In the initial stage of tumor development, there are no apparent signs or symptoms and patients do not seek for health care. Screening may help to pick up early cancers. The signs and symptoms begin to appear as tumor develops. Physicians reach to diagnosis following clinical evaluation, laboratory tests including biochemical, immunological and several cancer-specific tests, microscopic examinations (cytological, histological), endoscopic, ultrasonography, radio diagnosis and imaging (x-ray, Mammography, CT-Scan, MRI, PET-CT) and several other interventional methods.
Can cancer be cured?
With the availability of modern technologies and therapies, effective treatment of cancers has become possible. Many cancers are cured. Since every cancer is different, finding a single universal cure is unlikely. The chance of achieving cure increases when cancers are detected in very early stage. Personalized therapies offer cure and or cancer control to live longer and productive life. Even palliative care has been an effective method for treatment of patients with advance cancer, enabling them to live a better quality of life (QOL). The biggest changes in cancer may come from prevention or from innovations in treatments or vaccines to prevent spread of cancers.
What are the modalities of cancer treatment?
The conventional treatment modalities include surgery, chemotherapy, radiation therapy, hormone therapy and others. These treatment modalities are used in various combinations or separately based on the type and stage of the cancer. The development of science and technology has innovated high-quality machines, equipment and anti-cancer drugs that works well and has better results.
Why are people so frightened of cancer?
During 1900s and thereafter diseases such as syphilis, cholera, small pox claimed millions of lives globally. In recent past tuberculosis had been the major threat. With the advancement of medical science, small pox has been eradicated while other diseases have been effectively controlled. Currently, cancer, kidney failure, heart diseases have become a major fear factor. As people are dying more with other disease conditions, people’s perception to cancer is changing. Early detection and early treatment has enabled patients with cancer to live longer. In reality, the prevention and treatment of cancer has never been as promising as it is today.
Can cancer be prevented?
Preventive methods such as not smoking, eating a high-fiber, low-fat diet, practicing safe sexual behavior, having regular Pap tests, whole body check-up (annually)and preventing sun damage would reduce the incidence of majority of cancers. It is very important to note that cancer in its initial stage develops silently without any signs and symptoms. This is why prevention and screening are done even when there are no any signs and symptoms. For men and women it is advisable to get a regular screening done (yearly), so that early detection and better treatment outcomes can be achieved.
For detailed information on cancer prevention and control please:
Nepal Cancer Hospital & Research Center Pvt. Ltd. NCHRC
Harisiddhi, Lalitpur, Nepal
Telephone: 24 hrs Helpline +977-1-5251312