Author(s): Katalinic A, Waldmann A, Weinstock MA, Geller AC, Eisemann N,
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Abstract BACKGROUND: From July 1, 2003 to June 30, 2004, a population-based skin cancer screening project was conducted in Schleswig-Holstein, Germany. In total, 360,288 individuals aged ≥20 years were screened by means of a whole-body examination. In this report, the authors compare trends in melanoma mortality in Schleswig-Holstein with those in all adjacent regions, none of which had population-based skin cancer screening. METHODS: Trends in melanoma mortality rates for Schleswig-Holstein and the adjacent regions (Denmark and the German federal states of Mecklenburg-Vorpommern, Hamburg, and Lower Saxony) and in Germany excluding Schleswig-Holstein were compared. Log-linear regression was used to assess mortality trends. RESULTS: In Schleswig-Holstein during the pre skin cancer screening period (1998-1999), the age-standardized melanoma mortality rate (World standard population) was 1.9 per 100,000 for men and 1.4 per 100,000 for women. Melanoma mortality declined by 47\% to 1.0 per 100,000 men and by 49\% to 0.7 per 100,000 women by 2008/2009. The annual percentage change in the most recent 10-year period (2000-2009) was -7.5\% (95\% confidence interval, -14.0, -0.5) for men and -7.1\% (95\% confidence interval, -10.5, -2.9) for women. In each of the 4 adjacent regions and in the rest of Germany, mortality rates were stable, and the decline in Schleswig-Holstein was significantly different from the changes observed in all of the other areas studied. CONCLUSIONS: The current data represent strong evidence, but not absolute proof, that the skin cancer screening program produced a reduction in melanoma mortality in Schleswig-Holstein. Copyright © 2012 American Cancer Society.
This article was published in Cancer
and referenced in Advances in Cancer Prevention