Kharra: A leading cause of oral cancer, says survey

Kharra (mix of processed tobacco, betel nut or areca nut and lime) is a form of tobacco. According to the Government Dental College of Nagpur, consumption of Kharra leads to oral cancer


Tobacco is harmful for health. Non-communicable diseases (NCDs) like ischemic heart diseases, cancers, diabetes, chronic respiratory diseases are the leading causes of death globally and associated with tobacco use. The government dental college of Nagpur conducted a survey. In which, from January to August 2017, a mouth check-up was conducted in the hospital for seeking treatment for the survey. The survey revealed that many people have got cancer due to the consumption of tobacco based products. This has spoilt their teeth too.

In the survey, around 800 people were examined. Amongst which, 110 people had oral cancer and 68 people were habituated to consume Kharra. The number of people who consumed tobacco, gutkha, beedi, cigarette and paan masala was 42, informed Dr Sindhu Ganvir, Dean of the Government Dental College of Nagpur, while speaking to My Medical Mantra.

Dr Ganvir said, “All these patients were included in the survey period. Accordingly, the doctors interacted with the patients and understood their problems and were treated for their tooth pain and gum problems. Some patient’s teeth were spoilt due to the consumption of Kharra and some even got cancer.”

She added, “We spoke to people who consumed tobacco products and tried to know how long they have been addicted to it. And accordingly the study was conducted.”

Earlier, mouth cancer was seen after the age of 40, now, it is commonly seen in the age group of 20 to 30 which is up to 60 per cent informed Ganvir. The entire report of this survey will be sent to the state Food and Drug Administration. The hospital will request to ban tobacco products too.