Cancer pattern and survival in a rural district in South India.

Cancer epidemiology

PubMedID: 19853553

Swaminathan R, Selvakumaran R, Esmy PO, Sampath P, Ferlay J, Jissa V, Shanta V, Cherian M, Sankaranarayanan R. Cancer pattern and survival in a rural district in South India. Cancer Epidemiol. 2009;33(5):325-31.
BACKGROUND
Cancer pattern data are rare and survival data are none from rural districts of India.

METHODS
The Dindigul Ambilikkai Cancer Registry (DACR) covering rural population of 2 millions in Dindigul district, Tamil Nadu state, South India, registered 4516 incident cancers during 2003-2006 by active case finding from 102 data sources for studying incidence pattern, of which, 1045 incident cancers registered in 2003 were followed up for estimating survival. House visits were undertaken annually for each registered case for data completion. Cancer pattern was described using average annual incidence rates and survival experience was expressed by computing observed survival by actuarial method and age-standardized relative survival (ASRS).

RESULTS
The average annual age-standardized rate per 100,000 of all cancers together was higher among women (62.6) than men (51.9) in DACR. The most common cancers among men were stomach (5.6), mouth (4.2) and esophagus (3.7). Cervical cancer (22.1) was ranked at the top among women followed by breast (10.9) and ovary (3.3). DACR incidence rates were lesser by at least two folds and 5-year survival were on par or lower than Chennai metropolitan registry for most cancers. Five-year age-standardized relative survival (%) in DACR was as follows: all cancers (29%), larynx (48), mouth (42), breast/tongue (38) and cervix (37).

CONCLUSION
Cancer incidence was significantly lower, cancer patterns were markedly different and population-based cancer survival was lower in rural areas than urban areas thus providing valuable leads in estimating realistic cancer burden and instituting cancer control programs in India.