PMCC PMCC

Search tips
Search criteria

Advanced
Results 1-25 (1233835)

Clipboard (0)
None

Related Articles

1.  Trends in suicide in a Lithuanian urban population over the period 1984–2003 
BMC Public Health  2006;6:184.
Background
Throughout the last decade of the twentieth century, Lithuania had the highest suicide rates in Europe among both men and women aged 25–64 years. The rates increased from 1986 until 1995, but later there was a slight decrease. This paper describes the trends in suicide deaths in urban population in Lithuania by gender, dates and suicide method over the period 1984–2003.
Methods
Data from the regional mortality register were used to analyze suicide deaths among all men and women aged 25–64 years in Kaunas city, Lithuania over the period 1984–2003. Age-standardized death rates per 100,000 persons (using European standard population) were calculated by gender, suicide method and dates. A joinpoint regression method was used to estimate annual percentage changes (EPACs) and to detect points where the trends changed significantly.
Results
The frequency of death by suicide among males was 48% higher in 1994–2003 than in 1984–1993. The corresponding increase among females was 28%. The most common methods of suicide among men were hanging, strangulation and suffocation (87.4% among all suicide deaths). The proportions of hanging, strangulation and suffocation in males increased by 6.9% – from 83.9% to 89.7% – compared to a 24.2% increase in deaths from handgun, rifle and shotgun firearm discharges and a 216.7% increase in deaths from poisoning with solvents, gases, pesticides and vapors. Among females, the most common methods of suicide were hanging, strangulation and suffocation (68.3% of all suicide deaths). The proportion of hanging deaths among females increased during the time period examined, whereas the proportion of poisonings with solid or liquid substances decreased.
Conclusion
Suicide rates increased significantly among urban men aged 25–64 years in Lithuania throughout the period 1984–2003, whereas among women an increasing but statistically insignificant trend was observed. There were changes in the suicide methods used by both men and women. Changes in the choice of method may have contributed to the changes in suicide rates.
doi:10.1186/1471-2458-6-184
PMCID: PMC1540427  PMID: 16836765
2.  Recent trends in breast cancer incidence rates by age and tumor characteristics among U.S. women 
Breast Cancer Research  2007;9(3):R28.
Introduction
A recent abstract presented in a breast cancer symposium attributed the sharp decrease in female breast cancer incidence rates from 2002 to 2003 in the Surveillance, Epidemiology, and End Results (SEER) cancer registries of the United States to the reduced use of hormone replacement therapy since July 2002. However, this hypothesis does not explain the decrease that began in 1999 in the age-standardized incidence rate of invasive breast cancer in the nine oldest SEER cancer registry areas, although the trend through 2003 was not statistically significant. In this paper, we examine temporal trends in invasive and in situ female breast cancer by age, stage, tumor size, and estrogen receptor/progestin receptor (ER/PR) status in the nine oldest SEER cancer registry areas and consider the implication of these trends in relation to risk factors and screening.
Methods
We performed a joinpoint regression analysis to fit a series of joined straight lines to the trends in age-adjusted rates and described the resultant trends (slope) by annual percentage change (two-sided, P < 0.05).
Results
A plot of the age-specific rates of invasive breast cancer shows a decrease in all 5-year age groups from 45 years and above between 1999 and 2003 and sharp decreases largely confined to ER+ tumors in age groups from 50 to 69 years between 2002 and 2003. In joinpoint analyses by tumor size and stage, incidence rates decreased for small tumors (less than or equal to 2 cm) by 4.1% (95% confidence interval [CI], 0.2% to 7.8%) per year from 2000 through 2003 and for localized disease by 3.1% (95% CI, 1.2% to 5.0%) per year from 1999 through 2003. No decrease in incidence was observed for larger tumors or advanced-stage disease during the corresponding periods. Rates for in situ disease were stable from 2000 through 2003 after increasing rapidly since 1981.
Conclusion
Two distinct patterns are observed in breast cancer trends. The downturn in incidence rates in all age groups above 45 years suggests a period effect that is consistent with saturation in screening mammography. The sharp decrease in incidence from 2002 to 2003 that occurred in women 50 to 69 years old who predominantly, but not exclusively, had ER+ tumors may reflect the early benefit of the reduced use of hormone replacement therapy.
doi:10.1186/bcr1672
PMCID: PMC1929089  PMID: 17477859
3.  Cancer incidence and mortality trends in Australian adolescents and young adults, 1982–2007 
BMC Cancer  2012;12:151.
Background
Increasing incidence and lack of survival improvement in adolescents and young adults (AYAs) with cancer have led to increased awareness of the cancer burden in this population. The objective of this study was to describe overall and type-specific cancer incidence and mortality trends among AYAs in Western Australia from 1982–2007.
Methods
Age–adjusted incidence and mortality rates were calculated for all malignancies combined and for each of the most common diagnostic groups, using five-year age–specific rates. Joinpoint regression analysis was used to derive annual percentage changes (APC) for incidence and mortality rates.
Results
The annual incidence rate for all cancers combined increased in males from 1982 until 2000 (APC = 1.5%, 95%CI: 0.9%; 2.1%) and then plateaued, whilst rates for females remained stable across the study period (APC = −0.1%; 95%CI: −0.2%; 0.4%) across the study period. For males, significant incidence rate increases were observed for germ cell tumors, lymphoblastic leukemia and thyroid cancer. In females, the incidence of Hodgkin’s lymphoma, colorectal and breast cancers increased. Significant incidence rate reductions were noted for cervical, central nervous system and lung cancers. Mortality rates for all cancers combined decreased from 1982 to 2005 for both males (APC = −2.6%, 95%CI:−3.3%;−2.0%) and females (APC = −4.6%, 95%CI:−5.1%;−4.1%). With the exception of bone sarcoma and lung cancer in females, mortality rates for specific cancer types decreased significantly for both sexes during the study period.
Conclusions
Incidence of certain AYA cancers increased, whilst it decreased for others. Mortality rates decreased for most cancers, with the largest improvement observed for breast carcinomas. Further research is needed to identify the reasons for the increasing incidence of certain cancers.
doi:10.1186/1471-2407-12-151
PMCID: PMC3404933  PMID: 22520938
Cancer; Epidemiology; Adolescents; Young adults; Incidence; Mortality; Trends; Population-based
4.  Trends in prostate cancer incidence and mortality in Croatia, 1988 to 2008 
Croatian Medical Journal  2012;53(2):109-114.
Aim
To describe and interpret prostate cancer incidence and mortality trends in Croatia between 1988 and 2008.
Methods
Incidence data for the period 1988-2008 were obtained from the Croatian National Cancer Registry. The number of prostate cancer deaths was obtained from the World Health Organization mortality database. We also used population estimates for Croatia from the Population Division of the Department of Economic and Social Affairs of the United Nations. Age standardized incidence and mortality rates were calculated by the direct standardization method. To describe time trends of incidence and mortality, joinpoint regression analysis was used.
Results
Average age-standardized incidence rate between the first and last five-year period doubled, from 19.0/100 000 in 1988-1992 to 39.1 per 100 000 in 2004-2008. Age-standardized mortality rate increased by 6.9%, from 14.5 to 15.5 per 100 000. Joinpoint analysis of incidence identified two joinpoints. The increasing incidence trend started from 1997, with the estimated annual percent of change (EAPC) of 12.9% from 1997-2002 and of 4.1% from 2002-2008. Joinpoint analyses of mortality identified one joinpoint. Mortality trend first decreased, with EAPC of -3.0% from 1988-1995 to increase later with EAPC of 2.0% from 1995-2008.
Conclusion
The incidence of prostate cancer in Croatia has been on the increase since 1997. Trend in mortality is increasing, contrary to the trends in some higher-income countries. An improvement in the availability of different treatment modalities as well as establishing prostate cancer units could have a positive impact on prostate cancer mortality in Croatia.
doi:10.3325/cmj.2012.53.109
PMCID: PMC3342645  PMID: 22522988
5.  Trends in lung cancer incidence and mortality in Croatia, 1988 to 2008 
Croatian Medical Journal  2012;53(2):93-99.
Aim
To describe and interpret lung cancer incidence and mortality trends in Croatia between 1988 and 2008.
Methods
Incidence data on lung cancer for the period 1988-2008 were obtained from the Croatian National Cancer Registry, while mortality data were obtained from the World Health Organization mortality database. Population estimates for Croatia were obtained from the Population Division of the Department of Economic and Social Affairs of the United Nations. We also calculated and analyzed age-standardized incidence and mortality rates. To describe time incidence and mortality trends, we used joinpoint regression analysis.
Results
Lung cancer incidence and mortality rates in men decreased significantly in all age groups younger than 70 years. Age-standardized incidence rates in men decreased significantly by -1.3% annually. Joinpoint analysis of mortality in men identified three trends, and average annual percent change (AAPC) decreased significantly by -1.1%. Lung cancer incidence and mortality rates in women increased significantly in all age groups older than 40 years and decreased in younger women (30-39- years). Age-standardized incidence rates increased significantly by 1.7% annually. Joinpoint analysis of age-standardized mortality rates in women identified two trends, and AAPC increased significantly by 1.9%.
Conclusion
Despite the overall decreasing trend, Croatia is still among the European countries with the highest male lung cancer incidence and mortality. Although the incidence trend in women is increasing, their age standardized incidence rates are still 5-fold lower than in men. These trends follow the observed decrease and increase in the prevalence of male and female smokers, respectively. These findings indicate the need for further introduction of smoking prevention and cessation policies targeting younger population, particularly women.
doi:10.3325/cmj.2012.53.93
PMCID: PMC3342653  PMID: 22522986
6.  Annual Report to the Nation on the Status of Cancer, 1975–2005, Featuring Trends in Lung Cancer, Tobacco Use, and Tobacco Control 
Background
The American Cancer Society, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the National Cancer Institute (NCI), and the North American Association of Central Cancer Registries (NAACCR) collaborate annually to provide updated information on cancer occurrence and trends in the United States. This year’s report includes trends in lung cancer incidence and death rates, tobacco use, and tobacco control by state of residence.
Methods
Information on invasive cancers was obtained from the NCI, CDC, and NAACCR and information on mortality from the CDC's National Center for Health Statistics. Annual percentage changes in the age-standardized incidence and death rates (2000 US population standard) for all cancers combined and for the top 15 cancers were estimated by joinpoint analysis of long-term (1975–2005) trends and by least squares linear regression of short-term (1996–2005) trends. All statistical tests were two-sided.
Results
Both incidence and death rates from all cancers combined decreased statistically significantly (P < .05) in men and women overall and in most racial and ethnic populations. These decreases were driven largely by declines in both incidence and death rates for the three most common cancers in men (lung, colorectum, and prostate) and for two of the three leading cancers in women (breast and colorectum), combined with a leveling off of lung cancer death rates in women. Although the national trend in female lung cancer death rates has stabilized since 2003, after increasing for several decades, there is prominent state and regional variation. Lung cancer incidence and/or death rates among women increased in 18 states, 16 of them in the South or Midwest, where, on average, the prevalence of smoking was higher and the annual percentage decrease in current smoking among adult women was lower than in the West and Northeast. California was the only state with decreasing lung cancer incidence and death rates in women.
Conclusions
Although the decrease in overall cancer incidence and death rates is encouraging, large state and regional differences in lung cancer trends among women underscore the need to maintain and strengthen many state tobacco control programs.
doi:10.1093/jnci/djn389
PMCID: PMC2639291  PMID: 19033571
7.  Cancer mortality trends in the Umbria region of Italy 1978–2004: a joinpoint regression analysis 
BMC Cancer  2007;7:10.
Background
The aim of the present paper was to analyse cancer mortality in the Umbria region, from 1978 to 2004. Mortality trends depend on a number of factors including exposures, health system interventions, and possibly artefact (e.g. classification change, variations of data completeness). Descriptive data on mortality only allow for generation of hypotheses to explain observed trends. Some clues on the respective role of possible mortality determinants may be found comparing mortality with incidence and survival data.
Methods
Mortality data for the periods 1978–1993 and 1994–2004 were supplied by the National Institute of Statistics (ISTAT) and the Regional Causes of Death Registry (ReNCaM) respectively. Sex and site-specific mortality time trends were analysed by the "joinpoint regression" method.
Results
For all sites combined, in both sexes, the standardised rate was first increasing before the end of the eighties and decreasing thereafter. Gastric cancer mortality showed a different trend by gender; that is the rate constantly decreased over the period among females while, for males, it was first increasing up to 1985 and decreasing thereafter. Liver cancer trend showed a pattern similar to gastric cancer. Large bowel cancer showed a gender specific trend, that is it was increasing among males and stable among females. Also lung cancer mortality varied by gender: it started to decline after 1989 among males but was steadily increasing over the study period among women. A decreasing trend for female breast cancer mortality began in 1994. Prostate cancer mortality trend is the only one showing two significant joinpoints: mortality decreased up to 1990, then it increased up to 1998 and, finally, was decreasing.
Conclusion
Overall cancer mortality was decreasing in both sexes in Umbria and this favourable trend will probably continue and further improve since population screening against breast, cervix, and large bowel cancers were recently introduced. Besides gastric cancer, tobacco-related cancers and prostate cancer mainly contributed to mortality reduction in males, whereas breast cancer mainly contributed to declining mortality in females.
doi:10.1186/1471-2407-7-10
PMCID: PMC1781946  PMID: 17227578
8.  Trends in breast cancer incidence rates by age and tumor characteristics of women in the city of Isfahan for the period 2001-2010: An application of joinpoint analysis 
Background:
Cancer incidence trends use by health officials in order to program evaluations and development of cancer control strategies. The trends of cancer incidence have used to evaluate programs and develop the cancer control strategies. The aim of this study is to analyze changes of breast cancer incidence trends in Isfahan city using joinpoint regression models.
Materials and Methods:
The study was based on all cases of breast cancer reported among women residing in the city of Isfahan for the period 2001-2010. Age-standardized rates were calculated for each tumor characteristics, using the direct method. Joinpoint regression was used to provide estimated annual percentage change.
Results:
A plot of the age-specific rates of breast cancer showed an increase in all age groups from 30 to 69 years and sharp increase in the incidence of breast cancer confined to estrogen receptor-positive and progesterone receptor-positive tumors and the significant change (2003) by progesterone receptor− tumors. The analysis by tumor size and grade, incidence rates decreased for tumors >5 cm by 10.6% since 2006.7 and for poorly differentiated tumor by 26.1% since 2007.8. No decrease in incidence was observed for group of proportion of positive lymph nodes to lymph node surgery ≥25%. The proportion of positive lymph node to surgery node ≤25% (nonsignificant) was upward.
Conclusion:
The trend of incidence rates with tumor size ≤2, well-differentiated tumor grade, moderately differentiated tumor grade, positive estrogen and progesterone hormone receptors was upward. The pattern of breast cancer can help to cancer prevention and prognosis, selecting the best type of surgery.
PMCID: PMC4115347  PMID: 25097604
Age trend; breast cancer; incidence; joinpoint regression; tumor characteristics
9.  Annual Report to the Nation on the Status of Cancer, 1975–2006, Featuring Colorectal Trends and Impact of Interventions (Risk Factors, Screening, and Treatment) to Reduce Future Rates 
Cancer  2010;116(3):544-573.
Background
The American Cancer Society (ACS), the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the National Cancer Institute (NCI), and the North American Association of Central Cancer Registries (NAACCR) collaborate annually to provide updated information about cancer occurrence and trends in the United States (U.S.). This year’s report includes trends in colorectal cancer (CRC) incidence and death rates and highlights use of microsimulation modeling as a tool for interpreting past trends and projecting future trends to assist in cancer control planning and policy decisions.
Methods
Information on invasive cancers was obtained from the NCI, CDC, and NAACCR, and information on deaths from the CDC’s National Center for Health Statistics. Annual percentage changes in the age-standardized incidence and death rates (2000 U.S. population standard) for all cancers combined and for the top 15 cancers were estimated by joinpoint analysis of long-term (1975–2006) trends and short-term fixed interval (1997–2006) trends. All statistical tests were two-sided.
Results
Both incidence and death rates from all cancers combined significantly declined (P < .05) in the most recent time period for men and women overall and for most racial and ethnic populations. These decreases were driven largely by declines in both incidence and death rates for the 3 most common cancers in men (i.e., lung and prostate cancers and CRC) and for two of the 3 leading cancers in women (i.e., breast cancer and CRC). The long-term trends for lung cancer mortality in women showed smaller and smaller increases until 2003 when there was a change to a non-significant decline. Microsimulation modeling shows that declines in CRC death rates are consistent with a relatively large contribution from screening and with a smaller but demonstrable impact of risk factor reductions and improved treatments. These declines are projected to continue if risk factor modification, screening, and treatment remain at current rates, but could be further accelerated with favorable trends in risk factors and higher utilization of screening and optimal treatment.
Conclusions
Although the decrease in overall cancer incidence and death rates is encouraging, rising incidence and mortality for some cancers are of concern.
doi:10.1002/cncr.24760
PMCID: PMC3619726  PMID: 19998273
cancer; incidence; mortality; SEER; NAACCR; NPCR; United States (U.S.); CISNET colon models; microsimulation models; colorectal cancers
10.  The changing face of thyroid cancer in a population-based cohort 
Cancer Medicine  2013;2(4):537-544.
Abstract
In North America, the incidence of thyroid cancer is increasing by over 6% per year. We studied the trends and factors influencing thyroid cancer incidence, its clinical presentation, and treatment outcome during 1970–2010 in a population-based cohort of 2306 consecutive thyroid cancers in Canada, that was followed up for a median period of 10.5 years. Disease-specific survival (DSS) and disease-free survival were estimated by the Kaplan–Meier method and the independent influence of various prognostic factors was evaluated by Cox proportional hazard models. Cumulative incidence of deaths resulting from thyroid cancer was calculated by competing risk analysis. A P-value <0.05 was considered to indicate statistical significance. The age standardized incidence of thyroid cancer by direct method increased from 2.52/100,000 (1970) to 9.37/100,000 (2010). Age at diagnosis, gender distribution, tumor size, and initial tumor stage did not change significantly during this period. The proportion of papillary thyroid cancers increased significantly (P < 0.001) from 58% (1970–1980) to 85.9% (2000–2010) while that of anaplastic cancer fell from 5.7% to 2.1% (P < 0.001). Ten-year DSS improved from 85.4% to 95.6%, and was adversely influenced by anaplastic histology (hazard ratio [HR] = 8.7; P < 0.001), male gender (HR = 1.8; P = 0.001), TNM stage IV (HR = 8.4; P = 0.001), incomplete surgical resection (HR = 2.4; P = 0.002), and age at diagnosis (HR = 1.05 per year; P < 0.001). There was a 373% increase in the incidence of thyroid cancer in Manitoba with a marked improvement in the thyroid cancer-specific survival that was independent of changes in patient demographics, tumor stage, or treatment practices, and is largely attributed to the declining proportion of anaplastic thyroid cancers.
This article shows there is an increase in the incidence of thyroid cancers of all sizes in a population cohort in Canada. The improvement in thyroid cancer survival is due to reduced proportion of anaplastic thyroid cancer.
doi:10.1002/cam4.103
PMCID: PMC3799288  PMID: 24156026
Anaplastic; epidemiology; incidence; outcome; survival; trend
11.  Annual Report to the Nation on the Status of Cancer, 1975–2007, Featuring Tumors of the Brain and Other Nervous System 
Background
The American Cancer Society, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the National Cancer Institute, and the North American Association of Central Cancer Registries (NAACCR) collaborate annually to provide updated information on cancer occurrence and trends in the United States. This year’s report highlights brain and other nervous system (ONS) tumors, including nonmalignant brain tumors, which became reportable on a national level in 2004.
Methods
Cancer incidence data were obtained from the National Cancer Institute, CDC, and NAACCR, and information on deaths was obtained from the CDC’s National Center for Health Statistics. The annual percentage changes in age-standardized incidence and death rates (2000 US population standard) for all cancers combined and for the top 15 cancers for men and for women were estimated by joinpoint analysis of long-term (1992–2007 for incidence; 1975–2007 for mortality) trends and short-term fixed interval (1998–2007) trends. Analyses of malignant neuroepithelial brain and ONS tumors were based on data from 1980–2007; data on nonmalignant tumors were available for 2004–2007. All statistical tests were two-sided.
Results
Overall cancer incidence rates decreased by approximately 1% per year; the decrease was statistically significant (P < .05) in women, but not in men, because of a recent increase in prostate cancer incidence. The death rates continued to decrease for both sexes. Childhood cancer incidence rates continued to increase, whereas death rates continued to decrease. Lung cancer death rates decreased in women for the first time during 2003–2007, more than a decade after decreasing in men. During 2004–2007, more than 213 500 primary brain and ONS tumors were diagnosed, and 35.8% were malignant. From 1987–2007, the incidence of neuroepithelial malignant brain and ONS tumors decreased by 0.4% per year in men and women combined.
Conclusions
The decrease in cancer incidence and mortality reflects progress in cancer prevention, early detection, and treatment. However, major challenges remain, including increasing incidence rates and continued low survival for some cancers. Malignant and nonmalignant brain tumors demonstrate differing patterns of occurrence by sex, age, and race, and exhibit considerable biologic diversity. Inclusion of nonmalignant brain tumors in cancer registries provides a fuller assessment of disease burden and medical resource needs associated with these unique tumors.
doi:10.1093/jnci/djr077
PMCID: PMC3086878  PMID: 21454908
12.  Impact of Enhanced Detection on the Increase in Thyroid Cancer Incidence in the United States: Review of Incidence Trends by Socioeconomic Status Within the Surveillance, Epidemiology, and End Results Registry, 1980–2008 
Thyroid  2013;23(1):103-110.
Background
In the past 3 decades, the incidence of thyroid cancer in the United States has been increasing. There has been debate on whether the increase is real or an artifact of improved diagnostic scrutiny. Our hypothesis is that both improved detection and a real increase have contributed to the increase.
Methods
Because socioeconomic status (SES) may be a surrogate for access to diagnostic technology, we compared thyroid cancer incidence trends between high- and low-SES counties within the Surveillance, Epidemiology, and End Results 9 (SEER 9) registries. The incidence trends were assessed using joinpoint regression analysis.
Results
In high-SES counties, thyroid cancer incidence increased moderately (annual percentage change 1 [APC1]=2.5, p<0.05) before the late 1990s and more pronounced (APC2=6.3, p<0.05) after the late 1990s. In low-SES counties, incidence increased steadily with an APC of 3.5 (p<0.05) during the entire study period (1980–2008). For tumors ≤4.0 cm, incidence was higher in high-SES counties, and APC was higher for high- than low-SES counties after the late 1990s. For tumors >4.0 cm, high- and low-SES counties had similar increasing incidence trends. Similarly, for tumors ≤2.0 cm, the incidence trends differed between counties that are in or adjacent to metropolitan areas and counties that are in rural areas, whereas for tumors >2.0 cm, all counties regardless of area of residence had similar increasing trends.
Conclusions
Enhanced detection likely contributed to the increased thyroid cancer incidence in the past decades, but cannot fully explain the increase, suggesting that a true increase exists. Efforts should be made to identify the cause of this true increase.
doi:10.1089/thy.2012.0392
PMCID: PMC3539256  PMID: 23043274
13.  Time trends in breast cancer incidence and mortality in a mid-sized northeastern Brazilian city 
BMC Public Health  2012;12:883.
Background
Breast cancer incidence within an area is usually proportional to the area’s income level. High-income areas have shown the highest incidence rates and since 2003, negative trends. As for mortality, rates are often higher in low-income regions. The purpose of this study was to analyze trends in incidence and mortality in a capital city of a northeastern Brazilian state with an intermediate human development index.
Methods
Incidence data from the Population-Based Cancer Registry of Aracaju and mortality data from the Official State Database for the period 1996–2006 were used. Incidence and mortality crude and age-standardized rates were calculated. Time trends were obtained using the Joinpoint Regression Model.
Results
For the period studied, invasive breast cancer age-standardized incidence rates increased annually with an annual percentage change (APC) of 2.9 (95% CI: 1.2-4.6). Significant increasing trends were observed in groups aged 45–54 years (APC: 3.9, 95% CI: 1.4 to 6.6), and 55–64 years (APC: 5.6, 95% CI: 1.8 to 9.6). Age-standardized mortality rates did not show an increasing trend (APC: 3.0, (95% CI: -2.8 to9.1), except for the group aged 55–64 years (APC: 11.3, 95% CI: 1.1 to 22.4).
Conclusions
In the study community, breast cancer showed increasing incidence among women in the peri- and postmenopausal periods. However, mortality did not present increasing overall trends, except for among the group aged 55–64 years. For better outcomes, screening policies should focus on the peri- and postmenopausal periods of women’s lives to diagnose disease.
doi:10.1186/1471-2458-12-883
PMCID: PMC3503721  PMID: 23078090
Breast cancer; Incidence; Mortality; Cancer registry; Time trends
14.  Regional Changes in Charcoal-Burning Suicide Rates in East/Southeast Asia from 1995 to 2011: A Time Trend Analysis 
PLoS Medicine  2014;11(4):e1001622.
Using a time trend analysis, Ying-Yeh Chen and colleagues examine the evidence for regional increases in charcoal-burning suicide rates in East and Southeast Asia from 1995 to 2011.
Please see later in the article for the Editors' Summary
Background
Suicides by carbon monoxide poisoning resulting from burning barbecue charcoal reached epidemic levels in Hong Kong and Taiwan within 5 y of the first reported cases in the early 2000s. The objectives of this analysis were to investigate (i) time trends and regional patterns of charcoal-burning suicide throughout East/Southeast Asia during the time period 1995–2011 and (ii) whether any rises in use of this method were associated with increases in overall suicide rates. Sex- and age-specific trends over time were also examined to identify the demographic groups showing the greatest increases in charcoal-burning suicide rates across different countries.
Methods and Findings
We used data on suicides by gases other than domestic gas for Hong Kong, Japan, the Republic of Korea, Taiwan, and Singapore in the years 1995/1996–2011. Similar data for Malaysia, the Philippines, and Thailand were also extracted but were incomplete. Graphical and joinpoint regression analyses were used to examine time trends in suicide, and negative binomial regression analysis to study sex- and age-specific patterns. In 1995/1996, charcoal-burning suicides accounted for <1% of all suicides in all study countries, except in Japan (5%), but they increased to account for 13%, 24%, 10%, 7%, and 5% of all suicides in Hong Kong, Taiwan, Japan, the Republic of Korea, and Singapore, respectively, in 2011. Rises were first seen in Hong Kong after 1998 (95% CI 1997–1999), followed by Singapore in 1999 (95% CI 1998–2001), Taiwan in 2000 (95% CI 1999–2001), Japan in 2002 (95% CI 1999–2003), and the Republic of Korea in 2007 (95% CI 2006–2008). No marked increases were seen in Malaysia, the Philippines, or Thailand. There was some evidence that charcoal-burning suicides were associated with an increase in overall suicide rates in Hong Kong, Taiwan, and Japan (for females), but not in Japan (for males), the Republic of Korea, and Singapore. Rates of change in charcoal-burning suicide rate did not differ by sex/age group in Taiwan and Hong Kong but appeared to be greatest in people aged 15–24 y in Japan and people aged 25–64 y in the Republic of Korea. The lack of specific codes for charcoal-burning suicide in the International Classification of Diseases and variations in coding practice in different countries are potential limitations of this study.
Conclusions
Charcoal-burning suicides increased markedly in some East/Southeast Asian countries (Hong Kong, Taiwan, Japan, the Republic of Korea, and Singapore) in the first decade of the 21st century, but such rises were not experienced by all countries in the region. In countries with a rise in charcoal-burning suicide rates, the timing, scale, and sex/age pattern of increases varied by country. Factors underlying these variations require further investigation, but may include differences in culture or in media portrayals of the method.
Please see later in the article for the Editors' Summary
Editors' Summary
Background
Every year, almost one million people die by suicide globally; suicide is the fifth leading cause of death in women aged 15–49 and the sixth leading cause of death in men in the same age group. Most people who take their own life are mentally ill. For others, stressful events (the loss of a partner, for example) have made life seem worthless or too painful to bear. Strategies to reduce suicide rates include better treatment of mental illness and programs that help people at high risk of suicide deal with stress. Suicide rates can also be reduced by limiting access to common suicide methods. These methods vary from place to place. Hanging is the predominant suicide method in many countries, but in Hong Kong, for example, jumping from a high building is the most common method. Suicide methods also vary over time. For example, after a woman in Hong Kong took her life in 1998 by burning barbecue charcoal in a sealed room (a process that produces the toxic gas carbon monoxide), charcoal burning rapidly went from being a rare method of killing oneself in Hong Kong to the second most common suicide method.
Why Was This Study Done?
Cases of charcoal-burning suicide have also been reported in several East and Southeast Asian countries, but there has been no systematic investigation of time trends and regional patterns of this form of suicide. A better understanding of regional changes in the number of charcoal-burning suicides might help to inform efforts to prevent the emergence of other new suicide methods. Here, the researchers investigate the time trends and regional patterns of charcoal-burning suicide in several countries in East and Southeast Asia between 1995 and 2011 and ask whether any rises in the use of this method are associated with increases in overall suicide rates. The researchers also investigate sex- and age-specific time trends in charcoal-burning suicides to identify which groups of people show the greatest increases in this form of suicide across different countries.
What Did the Researchers Do and Find?
The researchers analyzed method-specific data on suicide deaths for Hong Kong, Japan, the Republic of Korea, Taiwan, and Singapore between 1995/1996 and 2011 obtained from the World Health Organization Mortality Database and from national death registers. In 1995/1996, charcoal-burning suicides accounted for less than 1% of all suicides in all these countries except Japan (4.9%). By 2011, charcoal-burning suicides accounted for between 5% (Singapore) and 24% (Taiwan) of all suicides. Rises in the rate of charcoal-burning suicide were first seen in Hong Kong in 1999, in Singapore in 2000, in Taiwan in 2001, in Japan in 2003, and in the Republic of Korea in 2008. By contrast, incomplete data from Malaysia, the Philippines, and Thailand showed no evidence of a marked increase in charcoal-burning suicide in these countries over the same period. Charcoal-burning suicides were associated with an increase in overall suicide rates in Hong Kong in 1998–2003, in Taiwan in 2000–2006, and in Japanese women after 2003. Finally, the annual rate of change in charcoal-burning suicide rate did not differ by sex/age group in Taiwan and Hong Kong, whereas in Japan people aged 15–24 and in the Republic of Korea people aged 25–64 tended to have the greatest rates of increase.
What Do These Findings Mean?
These findings show that charcoal-burning suicides increased markedly in several but not all East and Southeast Asian countries during the first decade of the 21st century. Moreover, in countries where there was an increase, the timing, scale, and sex/age pattern of the increase varied by country. The accuracy of these findings is likely to be limited by several aspects of the study. For example, because of the way that method-specific suicides are recorded in the World Health Organization Mortality Database and national death registries, the researchers may have slightly overestimated the number of charcoal-burning suicides. Further studies are now needed to identify the factors that underlie the variations between countries in charcoal-burning suicide rates and time trends reported here. However, the current findings highlight the need to undertake surveillance to identify the emergence of new suicide methods and the importance of policy makers, the media, and internet service providers working together to restrict graphic and detailed descriptions of new suicide methods.
Additional Information
Please access these websites via the online version of this summary at http://dx.doi.org/10.1371/journal.pmed.1001622.
A PLOS Medicine research article by Shu-Sen Chang and colleagues investigates time trends and regional patterns of charcoal-burning suicide in Taiwan
The World Health Organization provides information on the global burden of suicide and on suicide prevention (in several languages); it also has an article on international patterns in methods of suicide
The US National Institute of Mental Health provides information on suicide and suicide prevention
The UK National Health Service Choices website has detailed information about suicide and its prevention
MedlinePlus provides links to further resources about suicide (in English and Spanish)
The International Association for Suicide Prevention provides links to crisis centers in Asia
The charity Healthtalkonline has personal stories about dealing with suicide
doi:10.1371/journal.pmed.1001622
PMCID: PMC3972087  PMID: 24691071
15.  Characteristics and trends in incidence of childhood cancer in Beijing, China, 2000-2009 
Objective
To investigate the characteristics and incidence trends of childhood cancer in Beijing, China, from 2000 to 2009.
Methods
A total of 1,274 cases with childhood cancer in Beijing from 2000 to 2009 were included in the study. All rates were age-standardized using the direct method to the world standard population and expressed per million person-years. Incidence trends were characterized by calculating annual percent change (APC) using Joinpoint Regression Program.
Results
The crude incidence rate was 106.47 per million [age-standardized rate (ASR) 113.34] between 2000 and 2009 in Beijing with the most common diagnoses, leukemia (N=505, 39.64%, ASR 45.20), followed by central nervous system (CNS) tumors (N=228, 17.90%, ASR 19.28) and lymphoma (N=91, 7.14%, ASR 6.97). The incidence for all childhood cancers combined has increased during the study period, with an APC of 5.84% [95% confidence interval (95% CI): 1.0-10.9] after adjusted by world population. The ASR of all combined cancers in boys showed a slight, but no significant increase, with an APC of 5.33% (95% CI: –0.6-11.6); for girls, the trends increased significantly, with an APC of 6.54% (95% CI: 1.5-11.8).
Conclusions
The incidence rate of childhood cancer in Beijing was higher than the average level of China and lower than that of western countries. The incidence trends of childhood cancer, especially leukemia among girls showed a significantly increase from 2000 to 2009. While among boys, no substantially change was seen during the observed time period. Some sex-specific trends by subcategories and trends of major cancers in different age groups by cancer site merit further investigation.
doi:10.3978/j.issn.1000-9604.2014.06.09
PMCID: PMC4076710  PMID: 25035655
Childhood cancer; incidence; epidemiology; Beijing
16.  Increase in Female Liver Cancer in The Gambia, West Africa: Evidence from 19 Years of Population-Based Cancer Registration (1988–2006) 
PLoS ONE  2011;6(4):e18415.
Background
Hepatocellular Carcinoma (HCC) is a common malignancy worldwide with a high burden in West Africa. Male to female ratios show consistent bias toward males, the biological bases and variations of which are not well understood. We have used data from the Gambian National Cancer Registry to compare trends in incidence of HCC in both genders.
Methods and Findings
Two periods were compared, 1988–1997 (early) and 1998–2006 (recent). In addition, the regression program joinpoint was used to assess trends over 19 years. Differences with self-reported ethnicity were assessed for the recent period using population data from 2003 census. Male to female ratio showed a significant decrease between the two periods from 3.28∶1 (95% CI, [2.93–3.65]) to 2.2∶1 (95% CI, [1.99–2.43]). Although rates in males were relatively stable (38.36 and 32.84 for, respectively, early and recent periods), they increased from 11.71 to 14.9 in females with a significant Annual Percentage Change of 3.01 [0.3–5.8] over 19 years and an increase in number of cases of 80.28% (compared to 26% in males). Significant variations in HCC risk, but not in gender ratio were observed in relation with ethnicity.
Conclusion
This analysis of the only national, population-based cancer registry in West Africa shows a significant increase in HCC in females over recent years. This increase may be the consequence of major changes in lifestyle or viral risk factors, in particular obesity and hepatitis C, which have both been documented to increase in West Africa during recent years.
doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0018415
PMCID: PMC3072390  PMID: 21490972
17.  Trends in incidence, mortality, and survival for kidney cancer in Canada, 1986–2007 
Cancer Causes & Control  2014;25(10):1271-1281.
Purpose
Kidney cancer is one of the fastest rising cancers worldwide. We aimed to examine the trends in incidence, mortality, and survival for this cancer in Canada.
Methods
Incidence data for kidney cancer for 1986–2010 were from the Canadian Cancer Registry and the National Cancer Incidence Reporting System. These data were only available up to 2007 for the province of Quebec and consequently for the same year nationally, for Canada. Mortality data for 1986–2009 were from the Canadian Vital Statistics Death Database. Changes in age-standardized rates were analyzed by Joinpoint regression. Incidence rates were projected to 2025 using a Nordpred age-period-cohort model. Five-year relative survival ratios (RSR) were analyzed for 2004–2008 and earlier periods.
Results
Between 1986 and 2007, the age-standardized incidence rate (ASIR) per 100,000 rose from 13.4 to 17.9 in males and 7.7 to 10.3 in females. Annual increases in ASIR were greatest for age groups <65 years (males) and ≥65 years (females). The ASIRs increased significantly over time in both sexes for renal cell carcinoma (RCC) but not for other kidney cancer types. RCC rates are projected to increase until at least 2025. Mortality rates decreased only slightly in each sex since 1986 (0.4 %/year in males; 0.8 %/year in females). The 5-year RSR for kidney cancer was 68 % but differed largely by morphology and age, and has increased slightly over time.
Conclusions
The incidence rate of kidney cancer in Canada has risen since at least 1986, led largely by RCC. Increasing detection of incidental tumors, and growing obesity and hypertension rates are possible factors associated with this increase. Greater prevention of modifiable risk factors for kidney cancer is needed.
doi:10.1007/s10552-014-0427-x
PMCID: PMC4194017  PMID: 25034462
Kidney cancer; Renal cell carcinoma; Trends; Risk factors; Canada
18.  Trends in the incidence of human papillomavirus–related noncervical and cervical cancers in Alberta, Canada: a population-based study  
CMAJ Open  2014;2(3):E127-E132.
Introduction
Recent epidemiologic studies have suggested that the incidence of noncervical cancers associated with human papillomavirus (HPV) is increasing. We assessed temporal, age-specific and sex-specific changes in the incidence of HPV-associated cancers in a population-based study.
Methods
We used the Alberta Cancer Registry, a registry of all cancers diagnosed in the province of Alberta, Canada, to identify patients with cancers of the oropharynx, cervix, vulva, vagina, anus and penis (cancers associated with HPV) between Jan. 1, 1975, and Dec. 31, 2009. We estimated the age-standardized incidence of each cancer by sex- and age-specific group and assessed the annual percentage change using joinpoint regression.
Results
The age-standardized incidence of oropharyngeal cancers increased for each 5-year interval of the study period among men (annual percentage change 3.4, p < 0.001) and women (annual percentage change 1.5, p = 0.009). For anal cancers, the age-standardized rates increased among women (annual percentage change 2.2, p < 0.001) and men (annual percentage change 1.8, p = 0.008). The age-standardized incidence of cervical cancer increased with age, reaching an annual percentage change of –3.5 among women aged 75–84 years (p = 0.04). The rates of other HPV-associated cancers (vulvar, vaginal and penile) showed little change.
Interpretation
Our findings showed increases in the incidence of the HPV-associated cancers of the oropharynx and anus among men and women, and increases in cervical cancer among younger women. The incidence of HPV-related cancers in younger age groups should continue to be monitored. Programs to prevent HPV infection, such as vaccination, should be considered for males as well as females.
doi:10.9778/cmajo.20140005
PMCID: PMC4117359  PMID: 25114894
19.  Cancer mortality differences among urban and rural residents in Lithuania 
BMC Public Health  2008;8:56.
Background
The aim of this study was to describe and to compare the cancer mortality rates in urban and rural residents in Lithuania.
Methods
Cancer mortality has been studied using the materials of the Lithuanian cancer registry. For the period 1993–2004 age-standardized urban and rural population mortality rates (World standard) were calculated for all malignant neoplasm's and for stomach, colorectal, lung, prostate, breast and cervical cancers. The annual percentage change (APC) was calculated using log-linear regression model, two-sided Mantel-Haenzel test was used to evaluate differences in cancer mortality among rural and urban populations.
Results
For males in rural population cancer mortality was higher than in urban (212.2 and 197.0 cases per 100000) and for females cancer mortality was higher in urban population (103.5 and 94.2 cases per 100000, p < 0.05). During the study period the age-standardized mortality rates decreased in both sexes in urban residents. The decreasing mortality trend in urban population was contributed by decline of the rates of lung and stomach cancer in male and breast, stomach and colorectal cancer in female. Mortality rates in both urban and rural population were increasing for prostate and cervical cancers.
Conclusion
This study shows that large rural and urban inequalities in cancer mortality exist in Lithuania. The contrast between the health of residents in urban and rural areas invites researchers for research projects to develop, implement, and enhance cancer prevention and early detection intervention strategies for rural populations.
doi:10.1186/1471-2458-8-56
PMCID: PMC2259339  PMID: 18267035
20.  Past, Present and Future of Colorectal Cancer in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia 
Background/Aims:
The crude frequency of colorectal cancer (CRC) is second to breast cancer in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia (KSA). To assess the future burden of CRC in the country, we designed a model that takes into consideration the recent lifestyle pattern and the growth and aging of the population.
Methods:
We compared CRC statistics for KSA (using data from the National Cancer Registry) with that from the Surveillance, Epidemiology and End Results (SEER) databases of the United States of America (USA). We used the Joinpoint regression program to identify changes in secular trends, while the GLOBOCAN 2002 software was used to project future incidence and mortality.
Results:
Between 1994 and 2003, age-standardized rates (ASRs) for CRC in KSA almost doubled, as compared to a nonsignificant decline in USA. Between 2001 and 2003, while the annual percent change (APC) of CRC incidence in the USA showed a nonsignificant decrease in females, APC in Saudi females showed a nonsignificant rise of six percent. On the other hand, the rising incidence among Saudi males, during the years 1999 to 2003, was significant, with an APC of 20.5%. The projection model suggested that the incidence of CRC in KSA could increase fourfold in both genders by the year 2030.
Conclusions:
In KSA, the present and expected increase in CRC rates is alarming. Pragmatic recommendations to face that challenge are discussed. The present work could serve as a model to study other prevalent types of cancer, particularly in developing countries.
doi:10.4103/1319-3767.43275
PMCID: PMC2702938  PMID: 19568534
Colorectal cancer; developing country; incidence; Saudi Arabia
21.  Incidence and mortality trends of melanoma in Croatia, 1988-2008 
Croatian Medical Journal  2012;53(2):135-140.
Aim
To analyze melanoma incidence and mortality trends in Croatia 1988-2008, compare them with the trends in other populations, and identify possible changes in the trends.
Methods
Incidence data were obtained from the Croatian National Cancer Registry and the mortality data from the Croatian Bureau of Statistics. United Nations population estimates were used for calculating the age-specific rates. Age-standardized rates were calculated by the direct standardization method, using the world standard population as a reference. To estimate incidence and mortality trends, we performed joinpoint regression analysis.
Results
A significantly increasing incidence trend, with estimated annual percent change (EAPC) of 5.9% for men and 5.6% for women, was observed over the whole 21-year period and no additional joinpoints were identified. The overall incidence increase between the first and the last five-year period was 149% for men and 130% for women. Significant increase in the mortality trend was observed, with EAPC of 3.0% for men and 2.4% for women. No joinpoints were identified. The overall increase in mortality between the first and the last five-year period was 45% for men and 50% for women.
Conclusion
Melanoma rates in Croatia are steadily and markedly rising, with similar trends to those in the countries with lower/intermediate incidence. It is important to further investigate the more specific causes of the increasing trends, as well as to implement effective public policies targeting the melanoma burden.
doi:10.3325/cmj.2012.53.135
PMCID: PMC3342648  PMID: 22522991
22.  Annual Report to the Nation on the Status of Cancer, 1975–2009, Featuring the Burden and Trends in Human Papillomavirus (HPV)–Associated Cancers and HPV Vaccination Coverage Levels 
Background
The American Cancer Society (ACS), the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the National Cancer Institute (NCI), and the North American Association of Central Cancer Registries (NAACCR) collaborate annually to provide updates on cancer incidence and death rates and trends in these outcomes for the United States. This year’s report includes incidence trends for human papillomavirus (HPV)–associated cancers and HPV vaccination (recommended for adolescents aged 11–12 years).
Methods
Data on cancer incidence were obtained from the CDC, NCI, and NAACCR, and data on mortality were obtained from the CDC. Long- (1975/1992–2009) and short-term (2000–2009) trends in age-standardized incidence and death rates for all cancers combined and for the leading cancers among men and among women were examined by joinpoint analysis. Prevalence of HPV vaccination coverage during 2008 and 2010 and of Papanicolaou (Pap) testing during 2010 were obtained from national surveys.
Results
Death rates continued to decline for all cancers combined for men and women of all major racial and ethnic groups and for most major cancer sites; rates for both sexes combined decreased by 1.5% per year from 2000 to 2009. Overall incidence rates decreased in men but stabilized in women. Incidence rates increased for two HPV-associated cancers (oropharynx, anus) and some cancers not associated with HPV (eg, liver, kidney, thyroid). Nationally, 32.0% (95% confidence interval [CI] = 30.3% to 33.6%) of girls aged 13 to 17 years in 2010 had received three doses of the HPV vaccine, and coverage was statistically significantly lower among the uninsured (14.1%, 95% CI = 9.4% to 20.6%) and in some Southern states (eg, 20.0% in Alabama [95% CI = 13.9% to 27.9%] and Mississippi [95% CI = 13.8% to 28.2%]), where cervical cancer rates were highest and recent Pap testing prevalence was the lowest.
Conclusions
The overall trends in declining cancer death rates continue. However, increases in incidence rates for some HPV-associated cancers and low vaccination coverage among adolescents underscore the need for additional prevention efforts for HPV-associated cancers, including efforts to increase vaccination coverage.
doi:10.1093/jnci/djs491
PMCID: PMC3565628  PMID: 23297039
23.  Cancer incidence in northern Sweden before and after the Chernobyl nuclear power plant accident 
Sweden received about 5 % of the total release of 137Cs from the Chernobyl nuclear power plant accident in 1986. The distribution of the fallout mainly affected northern Sweden, where some parts of the population could have received an estimated annual effective dose of 1–2 mSv per year. It is disputed whether an increased incidence of cancer can be detected in epidemiological studies after the Chernobyl nuclear power plant accident outside the former Union of Soviet Socialist Republics. In the present paper, a possible exposure–response pattern between deposition of 137Cs and cancer incidence after the Chernobyl nuclear power plant accident was investigated in the nine northernmost counties of Sweden (2.2 million inhabitants in 1986). The activity of 137Cs from the fallout maps at 1986 was used as a proxy for the received dose of ionizing radiation. Diagnoses of cancer (ICD-7 code 140-209) from 1980 to 2009 were received from the Swedish Cancer Registry (273,222 cases). Age-adjusted incidence rate ratios, stratified by gender, were calculated with Poisson regression in two closed cohorts of the population in the nine counties 1980 and 1986, respectively. The follow-up periods were 1980–1985 and 1986–2009, respectively. The average surface-weighted deposition of 137Cs at three geographical levels; county (n = 9), municipality (n = 95) and parish level (n = 612) was applied for the two cohorts to study the pre- and the post-Chernobyl periods separately. To analyze time trends, the age-standardized total cancer incidence was calculated for the general Swedish population and the population in the nine counties. Joinpoint regression was used to compare the average annual percent change in the general population and the study population within each gender. No obvious exposure–response pattern was seen in the age-adjusted total cancer incidence rate ratios. A spurious association between fallout and cancer incidence was present, where areas with the lowest incidence of cancer before the accident coincidentally had the lowest fallout of 137Cs. Increasing the geographical resolution of exposure from nine county averages to 612 parish averages resulted in a two to three times higher value of variance in the regression model. There was a secular trend with an increase in age-standardized incidence of cancer in both genders from 1980 to 2009, but significant only in females. This trend was stronger and statistically significant for both genders in the general Swedish population compared to the nine counties. In conclusion, using both high quality cancer registry data and high resolution exposure maps of 137Cs deposition, it was not possible to distinguish an effect of 137Cs on cancer incidence after the Chernobyl nuclear power plant accident in Sweden.
doi:10.1007/s00411-014-0545-6
PMCID: PMC4102770  PMID: 24811728
Cancer; Cesium-137; Chernobyl; Ecological study; Environment; Epidemiology; Ionizing radiation; Nuclear accident; Radiation; Sweden
24.  Reduction in young male suicide in Scotland 
BMC Public Health  2008;8:80.
Background
Rates of suicide and undetermined death increased rapidly in Scotland in the 1980's and 1990's. The largest increases were in men, with a marked increase in rates in younger age groups. This was associated with an increase in hanging as a method of suicide. National suicide prevention work has identified young men as a priority group. Routinely collected national information suggested a decrease in suicide rates in younger men at the beginning of the 21st century. This study tested whether this was a significant change in trend, and whether it was associated with any change in hanging rates in young men.
Methods
Joinpoint regression was used to estimate annual percentage changes in age-specific rates of suicide and undetermined intent death, and to identify times when the trends changed significantly. Rates of deaths by method in 15 – 29 year old males and females were also examined to assess whether there had been any significant changes in method use in this age group.
Results
There was a 42% reduction in rates in 15 – 29 year old men, from 42.5/100,000 in 2000 to 24.5/100,000 in 2004. A joinpoint analysis confirmed that this was a significant change. There was also a significant change in trend in hanging in men in this age group, with a reduction in rates after 2000. No other male age group showed a significant change in trend over the period 1980 – 2004. There was a smaller reduction in suicide rates in women in the 15 – 29 year old age group, with a reduction in hanging from 2002.
Conclusion
There has been a reduction in suicide rates in men aged 15 – 29 years, and this is associated with a significant reduction in deaths by hanging in this age group. It is not clear whether this is related to a change in method preference, or an overall reduction in suicidal behaviour, and review of self-harm data will be required to investigate this further.
doi:10.1186/1471-2458-8-80
PMCID: PMC2292166  PMID: 18312616
25.  Improved survival after introduction of chemotherapy for malignant pleural mesothelioma in Slovenia: Population-based survey of 444 patients 
Radiology and Oncology  2012;46(2):136-144.
Background
Malignant pleural mesothelioma is a rare tumour with increasing frequency throughout the world. Due to long latency after exposure to asbestos, restrictions in the production and use of asbestos have not yet alleviated the burden of mesothelioma. During the last decade, several trials confirmed the benefit of systemic treatment with drugs such as doublets with cisplatina and gemcitabine or pemetrexed for carefully selected patients in good performance status. The purpose of this survey was to assess the impact of systemic treatment for the whole national population of patients with mesothelioma.
Patients and methods.
A retrospective study included all patients in Slovenia with histologically confirmed diagnosis of malignant pleural mesothelioma in the period from 1974 till 2008. Data from the Cancer Registry of Slovenia were supplemented by review of clinical records of the Institute of Oncology in Ljubljana where virtually all non-surgical treatment for mesothelioma was performed. We analysed the incidence, treatment, and survival of patients treated in the era of infrequent chemotherapy (1974–2003, the first period) and after it (2004–2008, the second period).
Results
The survey included 444 patients, of whom 325 and 119 were diagnosed in the first and second period, respectively. Joinpoint regression analysis showed that after 1995 the trend in crude incidence rates increased more rapidly; the annual change was 0.03 per 100,000 per year before 1995 and 0.06 per 100,000 per year after. There was clear male predominance (70%) throughout the period covered by the survey. The proportion of patients above 65 years of age increased from 41.8% to 54.6% for the first and second period, respectively (p = 0.02). With a total of 52 (11.7%) operated patients, surgical treatment was rare and used only for selected patients with early disease and without comorbidity, leading to their relatively long median survival of 13.6 months. Chemotherapy was applied to 56 (17.2%) and to 96 (80.7%) patients during the first and second period, respectively. While a variety of older drugs were used in the first period, the most common regimen in the second period (applied to 91 patients) was doublet of low-dose gemcitabine in prolonged infusion and cisplatin. For the whole population of patients regardless the mode of treatment, median survival was 7.4 and 12.6 months (p-value = 0.037) for the first and second period, respectively.
Conclusions
Increasing incidence, male predominance and increased proportion of older patients confirm that the burden of mesothelioma persists in spite of a 15-years old ban in the production of asbestos. Modern chemotherapy, and in particular treatment with low-dose gemcitabine in prolonged infusion and cisplatin significantly prolonged median survival of patients with malignant pleural mesothelioma in Slovenia.
doi:10.2478/v10019-012-0032-0
PMCID: PMC3472938  PMID: 23077450
malignant pleural mesothelioma; incidence; survival; chemotherapy; gemcitabine in prolonged infusion

Results 1-25 (1233835)