The burden of non-Hodgkin lymphoma in Central and South America

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Rationale and objective The burden of non-Hodgkin lymphoma (NHL) has increased in some Central and South American countries. We describe the current patterns and trends in NHL incidence and mortality in Central and South America. Methods We obtained regional- and national-level incidence data from 48 population-based cancer registries in 13 countries, and national-level cancer mortality data from the WHO mortality database for 18 countries. We estimated world population age-standardized incidence rates (ASRs) and mortality rates (ASMRs) per 100,000 person-years for 2003–2007, and presented distributions by histological subtype. Results NHL incidence and mortality rates varied between countries by 2–8- and 6-fold, respectively. ASRs per 100,000 ranged from 1.4 to 10.9 among males and 1.3–9.2 among females. Corresponding ASMRs were between 0.5 and 4.8 among males and between 0.5 and 3.0 among females. The highest incidence was observed in Uruguay (males), Ecuador, Peru and Colombia (males). The highest mortality was seen in Uruguay and Costa Rica. Trends in NHL incidence and mortality in Argentina, Brazil, Chile and Costa Rica did not show marked changes. B-cell neoplasms and NHL not otherwise specified (NOS) accounted for 44% and 34% of all NHL cases. Diffuse large B-cell lymphoma, NOS, was the most frequent histological subtype. Conclusion The geographic variations in NHL rates may partially reflect differences in registration practices, disease classification, diagnostic practice, and death certification quality. There is a need for high-quality data and improvements in the accuracy of NHL histological diagnosis. Given the expected increase in NHL, careful monitoring of rates remains a priority to guide cancer control programs.




Diumenjo, M. C., Abriata, G., Forman, D., & Sierra, M. S. (2016). The burden of non-Hodgkin lymphoma in Central and South America. Cancer Epidemiology, 44, S168–S177.

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