Over a third of Chinese women with breast cancer start to suffer the disease at their 40s and their average age is 48, 10 years earlier than Western women, according to a national survey.
“The incidence of breast cancer in China, though it is still lower than Western counties, is definitely rising through our clinical observation,” said the academy’s Dr Qiao Youlin.
“The survey helps to collect useful information to explain the rising incidence, to learn patients’ major symptoms and clinical diagnosis and treatment,” Qiao said.
The reason why Chinese women develop breast cancer earlier is unknown, but experts cite various factors, including the environment, diet, lifestyle and genetics.
People in east and south China are more likely to suffer breast cancer than those in the west and central parts of the country while people in cities are more likely to suffer the disease than women in rural areas.