Cancer prevention and control

Print

Related Information

Cervical cancer

The burden of cancer has been on the increase over the past few decades. In 2012 alone, 8.2 million people worldwide were estimated to have died from cancer. More than two thirds of these deaths occurred in low- and middle- income countries.

The most common cancers in the African Region are cancers of the cervix, breast, liver and prostate as well as Kaposi's sarcoma and non-Hodgkin's lymphoma.

The rise in the number of cases of cancer is due to ageing populations and the increasing adoption of risk behavior such as: consumption of unhealthy diets, lack of physical exercise, harmful use of alcohol and tobacco use. In the African Region, infections due to human papillomavirus and hepatitis B and C viruses significantly contribute to the burden of the top two cancers, namely cervical and liver cancer respectively.

Many lives can be saved if appropriate investment is made in raising public awareness on the early signs and symptoms of common cancers. In addition people should adopt healthy lifestyles that reduce the risk of cancers.


Related links

Message of the WHO Regional Director for Africa on World Cancer Day 2015

Cervical cancer common amongst African women

Beyond World Cancer Day: Raising Awareness, Dispelling Myths About Cancer

WHO guide for effective cancer control

Cancer is an emerging public health problem in Africa - Radio Interview

Cancer fact sheet