World Cancer Day 2021: Facts, Inspiring Quotes, Disease & Themes

World Cancer Day is marked on February 4 to raise awareness of cancer and to encourage its prevention, detection, and treatment. World Cancer Day was founded by the Union for International Cancer Control (UICC) to support the goals of the World Cancer Declaration, written in 2008.


The day is observed worldwide in order to raise awareness about cancer and to apprise governments of the importance of taking action to prevent its rate of increase in the society.

People, businesses, governments and non-profit organizations work together on World Cancer Day to help the general public learn more about the different types of cancer, how to watch for it, treatments and preventative measures.

The primary goal of the World Cancer Day is to significantly reduce illness and death caused by cancer by 2021.

World Cancer Day Facts

Facts and statistics about cancer : 

  • Cancer is the generic term for the group of diseases involving abnormal cell growth with the potential to invade or spread to other parts of the body. Other terms used for the disease are malignant tumours and neoplasms
  • Cancers are among the leading causes of death worldwide, with approximately 14 million new cases and 8.2 million cancer-related deaths in 2012
  • But apparently, with the recent breakthroughs in research and treatment, cancer survival rates have doubled in the last 40 years
  • However, the number of new cases of cancer is expected to rise by about 70 percent over the next two decades
  • The five most common cancers in men in 2012 were prostate, lung, colorectum, stomach and liver
  • In women, the most common cancers were breast, colorectum, lung, cervix and stomach
  • Smoking is the most important risk factor in cancer, causing around 20 per cent of global cancer deaths and around 70 per cent of lung cancer deaths. Lung cancer caused 1.59 million deaths in 2012
  • An estimated 169.3 million years of healthy life were lost globally because of cancer in 2008, according to Cancer Research UK
  • In developing countries, cancer-causing viral infections – such as the human papillomavirus – are responsible for up to 20 per cent of cancer deaths
  • More than 60 per cent of new annual cases of cancer occur in Africa, Asia and Central and South America – all of which account for 70 percent of the world’s cancer deaths.

Cancer in India:

  • More women than men are diagnosed with cancer every year in India
  • In 2011-12, around 75 Mobile Cancer Detection Camps were conducted by Indian Cancer Society (ICS) for a total of 75 days. 6644 clients consisting of 3819 women and 2825 men were screened for cancer at these camps
  • A total of 163 clients were referred to Tata Memorial Hospital for further investigation
  • Out of 3289 women screened in five different states of India, 66 were detected with breast cancer
  • As per the World Cancer Report, a total of 5.37 lakh Indian women got cancer in 2012 as against 4.77 lakh men. The same year, 3.56 lakh men died of the disease in comparison to 3.26 lakh women
  • Also, as per some online media reports, about 1.6 to 4.8 per cent of all cancers in India is seen in children below 15 years.

World Cancer Day Inspiring Quotes

Cancer has taught me a lot of things. Maybe it is the best thing that has happened to me. I can’t say right now, but maybe some years down the line, I would realise. When I was taking chemotherapy, there were a lot of elderly patients, and that would inspire me. I thought, ‘If they can be cured, why can’t I be?’ – Yuvraj Singh, Indian cricketer


The battle against cancer has made me strong. It’s like winning a war! When I was diagnosed, I was told by doctors my kidney, liver and other organs could fail. It was tough. I didn’t know if I could save my life. But I was positive, and because of that, the doctor told me that I would be a man who would never have cancer. – Yuvraj Singh.


Cancer affects all of us, whether you’re a daughter, mother, sister, friend, coworker, doctor, or patient. –Jennifer Aniston, American actress


Cancer is a word, not a sentence. –John Diamond, British Journalist


There can be life after breast cancer. The prerequisite is early detection. –Ann Jillian, American actress


Cancer is a great wake-up call. A call to take the tag off the new lingerie and wear that black lacy slip. To open the box of pearls and put them on. To crack open the bath oil beads before they shrivel up in a bowl on the toilet tank. – Regina Brett, Author


Cancer didn’t bring me to my knees, it brought me to my feet. – Michael Douglas, American actor


I was a vegetarian first. I had high blood pressure at 27, everybody in my family died of cancer, and I knew it was in the food, so I changed my diet. – John Salley, Basketball player


When someone has cancer, the whole family and everyone who loves them does, too. – Terri Clark, Musical Artist


I think cancer is a hard battle to fight alone or with another person at your side, but I will say having someone to pick you up when you fall, stand by your side through every appointment and delivery of bad news, is priceless. – Jenna Morasca, American actress


I keep dreaming of a future, a future with a long and healthy life, not lived in the shadow of cancer but in the light. – Patrick Swayze, American actor


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