Breast cancer a big threat for women in the UAE

DUBAI — Breast cancer was the single most commonly occurring cancer among the UAE population, accounting for 22.8 per cent of all cases in women, according to the statistical report of the Dubai Health Authority (from 1998 to 2001).

By A Staff Reporter

Published: Fri 20 Jun 2008, 9:22 AM

Last updated: Sun 5 Apr 2015, 6:33 PM

The Middle East Media Summit, a one-day event hosted by GE Healthcare convened yesterday at the Grosvenor House in Dubai, discussed emerging trends in detecting breast cancer as the main topic.

Participants said the highest incidence of breast cancer in the region was in Kuwait with close to 80 to 100 per 100,000 cases.

The summit commenced with a keynote speech by Nabil Habayeb, President and CEO, GE Middle East and Africa, followed by a keynote address by Richard di Benedetto, President and CEO GE Healthcare, International, Eastern and Africa Growth Markets region (EAGM).

Several leading healthcare experts delivered presentations on a range of healthcare related topics at the event.

According to the World Health Organisation, breast cancer is the second leading cause of cancer deaths in the world.

It is the most common cancer among women worldwide, accounting for 23 per cent of all new cancer cases.

The Gulf region has taken several pioneering initiatives in increasing awareness about breast cancer and screening. This follows independent research on the rising incidence of the disease, which can be managed through timely screening, diagnosis and treatment.

Early diagnosis is key to increasing the survival rate of those suffering from breast cancer. According to statistics, the chances of survival of breast cancer victims if detected within five years are 87 per cent, but this decreases to 52 per cent after 20 years.

Dr Dorria Salem, Professor of Radiology at Cairo University, one of the keynote speakers at this year's summit said, ‘Education is the key to increasing the rate of breast cancer detection and cure. The plan is to create an academy to deliver the message about the benefits of breast cancer screening for women in the Middle East.’

Key topics discussed at the event included the emergence of healthcare trends in the region; the management of healthcare funding and delivery; fetal medicine education and training; regional health burdens such as breast cancer and cardiovascular disease; as well as technological solutions.

The event was attended by some 40 journalists from across the region.

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