Geriatric Cancers in India: An Epidemiological and Demographic Overview


This article provides an overview of aspects of the burden of cancer in the elderly, in India highlightingcertain demographic and epidemiological data. In India the normal retirement age is 60 years, so the definitionof the elderly, in India is considered above the age of 60 years. Information on the aging of the Indian populationis based on various census figures, cancer incidence figures are taken from Mumbai registry data. Men andwomen aged ≥ 60 years are at high risk for major cancers. Men have a risk 15 times greater risk and in women8 times greater risk than the persons having age < 60 years. Lung and prostate cancers are most prominentcancer in men having age ≥ 60 years while in women breast is the leading site followed by cervix and ovary in thesame age group. Demographic and epidemiologic data characterize the aging / cancer interface. The changingdemographic structures underscore the current incidence imperative for elderly; suggesting a starting demandwill be made in the future requiring physician’s abilities and skills to meet these needs.