Cancer incidence in Ghana, 2012: evidence from a population-based cancer registry

Type Journal Article - BMC cancer
Title Cancer incidence in Ghana, 2012: evidence from a population-based cancer registry
Volume 14
Issue 1
Publication (Day/Month/Year) 2014
Page numbers 362
Background.Data on cancers is a challenge in most developing countries. Population-based cancer registries are also not common in developing countries despite the usefulness of such registries in informing cancer prevention and control programmes. The availability of population-based data on cancers in Africa varies across different countries. In Ghana, data and research on cancer have focussed on specific cancers and have been hospital-based with no reference population. The Kumasi Cancer Registry was established as the first population-based cancer registry in Ghana in 2012 to provide information on cancer cases seen in the city of Kumasi.
Methods.This paper reviews data from the Kumasi Cancer Registry for the year 2012. The reference geographic area for the registry is the city of Kumasi as designated by the 2010 Ghana Population and Housing Census. Data was from all clinical departments of the Komfo Anokye Teaching Hospital, Pathology Laboratory Results, Death Certificates and the Kumasi South Regional Hospital. Data was abstracted and entered into Canreg 5 database. Analysis was conducted using Canreg 5, Microsoft Excel and Epi Info Version
Results. The majority of cancers were recorded among females accounting for 69.6% of all cases. The mean age at diagnosis for all cases was 51.6 years. Among males, the mean age at diagnosis was 48.4 compared with 53.0 years for females. The commonest cancers among males were cancers of the Liver (21.1%), Prostate (13.2%), Lung (5.3%) and Stomach (5.3%). Among females, the commonest cancers were cancers of the Breast (33.9%), Cervix (29.4%), Ovary (11.3%) and Endometrium (4.5%). Histology of the primary tumour was the basis of diagnosis in 74% of cases with clinical and other investigations accounting for 17% and 9% respectively. The estimated cancer incidence Age Adjusted Standardised Rate for males was 10.9/100,000 and 22.4/100, 000 for females.
Conclusion. This first attempt at population-based cancer registration in Ghana indicates that such registries are feasible in resource limited settings as ours. Strengthening Public Health Surveillance and establishing more Population-based Cancer Registries will help improve data quality and national efforts at cancer prevention and control in Ghana.

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