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Top 3 Types of Cancer Affecting Most Male Kenyans, Most Affected Regions

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Photo of Kenyatta National Hospital.

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Men have higher rates of getting and dying from cancer than women. According to Centre for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), most cancers take years to develop depending on the risk factors.

Prostate cancer is the most common among males followed by other two more.

According to the August 2021 World Health Organization (WHO) report, prostate, colorectal, and lung cancers are the most common among men.

By Province, according to a Kenyan-based AAS Open Research, most Kenyatta National Hospital (KNH) patients who visit for cancer treatment are from Central, Eastern and Western, (44%, 24.8% and 10.2% respectively), with specific regions being Muranga, Kiambu, Machakos, Nyeri and Kisii (11.2%, 10.2%, 8%, 8% and 5.4% respectively).

Prostate Cancer

Prostate cancer is the most common cancer among men. The chance of getting prostate cancer increases as a man gets older. This type of cancer is common among men over the age of 65.

How to Notice that You or Your Family Member Could Be Having Prostate Cancer

The following signs and symptoms can help you realize the presence of this type of cancer:

-Frequent urination.

-Weak or interrupted urine flow or the need to strain to empty the bladder.

-The urge to urinate frequently at night.

-Blood in the urine.

-New onset of erectile dysfunction.

-Pain or burning during urination, which is much less common.

How can one avoid it?

Age 45 for men at high risk of developing prostate cancer.

“Well its easy. You have to be sexually active. Its highly prevalent in middle aged to old men,” says Richard Bahati Adogo, an oncologist, Thika Level 5 Hospital.

Colorectal cancer

Colorectal cancer starts in the colon or rectum. Some factors that increase colorectal cancer risk include being overweight or obese, physical inactivity, a diet high in red and processed meats, smoking, heavy alcohol use, being older, and a personal or family history of colorectal cancer or polyps.

“One can get it because of genetic predisposition or be acquired depending on lifestyle or environmental exposure,” says Adogo.

How to Notice The Presence of Colorectal Cancer

You could be a victim of Colorectal cancer if you experience the following signs:

-A persistent change in your bowel habits, including diarrhea or constipation or a change in the consistency of your stool.

-Rectal bleeding or blood in your stool.

-Persistent abdominal discomfort, such as cramps, gas or pain.

-A feeling that your bowel doesn’t empty completely.

-Weakness or fatigue.

How Can You Avoid It?

Screening can help to find colorectal cancer early, when it’s smaller, hasn’t spread, and might be easier to treat. It is also advisable that from the age of 10 through 75, one should undergo regular screening for colorectal cancer.

Lung Cancer

Lung cancer is mainly caused by exposure to chemicals and other particles in the air. However, medics say that smoking tobacco is the leading cause of lung cancer. At the same time, not all people with lung cancer smokers, and the main reason for this has not been purely established.

The best thing to do is to go for screening to know your status. The following signs can help you notice the presence of lung cancer:

-Coughing that gets worse or doesn’t go away.

-Chest pain.

-Shortness of breath.

-Wheezing.

-Coughing up blood.

-Feeling very tired all the time.

-Weight loss with no known cause.

How to Avoid Lung Cancer

Lung cancer can be prevented. There are things you can do to lower your risk of getting it. For example, if you don’t smoke, don’t start, and avoid being a passive smoker while others are smoking.

WHO notes that it may not be easy to control all risk factors but you can control a significant number of them. In fact there are several things you ca do to greatly reduce the risk factor. These include early screening for early detection and treatment, eating balanced diet, and doing exercises.