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Pakistan is a developing country with a population of about 180 million people out of which 39% are under 15 years of age. Although malnutrition and communicable diseases are still the major killers, cancer is becoming an important cause of morbidity and mortality in children. The childhood cancer is more often diagnosed now due to better diagnostic facilities and availability of treatment centers. However the awareness about childhood cancer among doctors and general population is still very poor.

Cancer among children is fortunately less common than in adult accounting for 3% to 5% of all cancers. Based on Karachi Cancer Registry it is estimated that about 7000 to 7500 children get cancer every year in Pakistan. The relative frequency of various childhood cancers seen at Children Cancer Hospital is shown as under

Disease Percentage
Leukemia (blood cancer) 31%
Lymphoma (cancer of lymph gland) 20%
Sarcoma ( cancer of muscle and soft tissue) 08%
Bone Tumor 08%
Brain Tumor 07%
Retinoblastoma (cancer of eye) 06%
Wilms Tumor ( cancer of kidney) 05%
Germ Cell Tumor 04%
Neuroblastoma 04%
Others 07%

Major issues of childhood cancer in Pakistan are:

  • Late diagnosis and advanced staged disease
  • Insufficient specialized units
  • Shortage of trained human resources
  • Inability to afford treatment
  • Lack of awareness and nihilistic approach to cancer

287 comments

  1. Tahira Bano /

    Slam.
    My cousion is suffering from blood cancer
    she is too young her family can’t afford her treatment privately kindly reply me if u can help me in this context please
    we are in severe pain
    kindly reply me for the sake of ALLAH swt
    Warm Regards
    Dr Tahira

    • For appointment please ring Children Cancer Hospital reception 021-6369160-70 or UAN +92-21-111-160-170

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