Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - RUPP workshop raises breast cancer awareness

RUPP workshop raises breast cancer awareness

Content image - Phnom Penh Post
A workshop themed “Let’s talk about cancer” was held on October 29 at the Department of Media and Communication at the Royal University of Phnom Penh (RUPP). LIFE GIFT VIA FACEBOOK

RUPP workshop raises breast cancer awareness

A breast cancer survivor urged women who suspect they have developed the disease to muster their courage to seek treatment as soon as possible, while the Ministry of Health has warned that it is the leading cause of cancer deaths among women in Cambodia.

To further raise awareness of the issue, especially among the youth, a workshop themed “Let’s talk about cancer” was held on October 29 at the Department of Media and Communication at the Royal University of Phnom Penh (RUPP), with more than 100 students in attendance.

Ream Sok Chamroeurn, the breast cancer survivor, shared her story with the attendees.

“When I was first diagnosed, I dropped all of my life goals and only thought of living day to day,” she said.

Sok Chamroeurn did not know what to do as she had heard many women saying that it was rare to survive breast cancer. But she was fortunate enough to meet with medical professionals who talked her through her condition – and the best treatment options.

“The doctors played an important part in helping me to understand what was happening. They were not judgemental and did not use any inappropriate language. They examined my condition and devised the best treatment for my case,” she said.

After undergoing the prescribed treatment, she was cured.

Sok Chamroeurn urged the audience to pay close attention to their health and examine themselves regularly, as timely treatment is crucial to improving their chance of survival. After her recovery, Chamroeurn wrote a book describing her experiences of undergoing cancer treatment.

The book, “Knife Scars”, was written so she could share her experience with others.

Thou Sarameth, deputy head and co-founder of the Chakra Cancer Clinic who also attended the workshop, said most of the patients he encountered were already in critical condition.

“The patients who come to meet with me are rarely rich. Those who I examined in the first or second stages of the disease were generally in pain,” he said.

He added that when breast cancer enters the third or fourth stages, the chances of survival are reduced significantly.

“The delay in seeking treatment stems from a lack of knowledge. People don’t act quickly enough on unusual changes to their bodies. This negligence can often lead to a critical stage,” Sarameth said.

One of the students in attendance, Ly Socheata, said she had learned a lot from the three-hour workshop.

“Before, I knew almost nothing about breast cancer, but having listened to the doctors and Chamroeurn, I feel like I am much more aware now,” she added.

In Cambodia, 23 per cent of the population die of non-communicable diseases before the age of 70. Among them, 24 per cent succumbed to heart attacks, 14 per cent to cancer, four per cent to chronic respiratory disorders and two per cent to diabetes.

The health ministry reported in 2020 that cancer had taken the lead for women, with 20.25 per cent of cancer deaths coming from breast cancer, 18.93 per cent from cervical cancer and 4.77 per cent from colon cancer.

According to a 2015 study by the World Health Organisation (WHO), cancer rates among the elderly will increase by almost 300 per cent, significantly faster than other ASEAN countries.


  • Joy as Koh Ker Temple registered by UNESCO

    Cambodia's Koh Ker Temple archaeological site has been officially added to UNESCO’s World Heritage List, during the 45th session of the World Heritage Committee held in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, on September 17. The ancient temple, also known as Lingapura or Chok Gargyar, is located in

  • Famed US collector family return artefacts to Cambodia

    In the latest repatriation of ancient artefacts from the US, a total of 33 pieces of Khmer cultural heritage will soon return home, according to the Ministry of Culture and Fine Arts. In a September 12 press statement, it said the US Attorney’s Office for the

  • Cambodia set to celebrate Koh Ker UNESCO listing

    To celebrate the inscription of the Koh Ker archaeological site on UNESCO’s World Heritage List, the Ministry of Cults and Religion has appealed to pagodas and places of worship to celebrate the achievement by ringing bells, shaking rattles and banging gongs on September 20. Venerable

  • Kampot curfew imposed to curb ‘gang’ violence

    Kampot provincial police have announced measures to contain a recent spike in antisocial behaviour by “unruly’ youth. Officials say the province has been plagued by recent violence among so-called “gang members”, who often fight with weapons such as knives and machetes. Several social observers have

  • PM outlines plans to discuss trade, policy during US visit

    Prime Minister Hun Manet is set to meet with senior US officials and business leaders during his upcoming visit to the US for the UN General Assembly (UNGA), scheduled for September 20. While addressing nearly 20,000 workers in Kampong Speu province, Manet said he aims to affirm

  • Manet touches down in Beijing for high-level meetings

    Prime Minister Hun Manet arrived in Beijing on September 14 for his first official visit to China, where he is slated to attend the 20th China-ASEAN Expo and meet other leaders including Chinese President Xi Jinping. Upon his arrival, Manet laid a wreath at the Monument