Author(s): Politis M, Higuera G, Chang LR, Gomez B, Bares J,
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Abstract Cancer is one of the leading causes of death worldwide and its incidence is expected to increase in the future. In Panama, cancer is also one of the leading causes of death. In 1964, a nationwide cancer registry was started and it was restructured and improved in 2012. The aim of this study is to utilize Joinpoint regression analysis to study the trends of the incidence and mortality of cancer in Panama in the last decade. Cancer mortality was estimated from the Panamanian National Institute of Census and Statistics Registry for the period 2001 to 2011. Cancer incidence was estimated from the Panamanian National Cancer Registry for the period 2000 to 2009. The Joinpoint Regression Analysis program, version 4.0.4, was used to calculate trends by age-adjusted incidence and mortality rates for selected cancers. Overall, the trend of age-adjusted cancer mortality in Panama has declined over the last 10 years (-1.12\% per year). The cancers for which there was a significant increase in the trend of mortality were female breast cancer and ovarian cancer; while the highest increases in incidence were shown for breast cancer, liver cancer, and prostate cancer. Significant decrease in the trend of mortality was evidenced for the following: prostate cancer, lung and bronchus cancer, and cervical cancer; with respect to incidence, only oral and pharynx cancer in both sexes had a significant decrease. Some cancers showed no significant trends in incidence or mortality. This study reveals contrasting trends in cancer incidence and mortality in Panama in the last decade. Although Panama is considered an upper middle income nation, this study demonstrates that some cancer mortality trends, like the ones seen in cervical and lung cancer, behave similarly to the ones seen in high income countries. In contrast, other types, like breast cancer, follow a pattern seen in countries undergoing a transition to a developed economy with its associated lifestyle, nutrition, and body weight changes.
This article was published in Medicine (Baltimore)
and referenced in Journal of Molecular Biomarkers & Diagnosis