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Cancer Statistics
Population in 2008: 31.6m
People newly diagnosed with cancer (excluding NMSC) / yr: 27,100
Age-standardised rate, incidence per 100,000 people/yr: 171.9
Risk of getting cancer before age 75:17.8%
People dying from cancer /yr: 21,300
Data from IARC GlobalCan (2008)
Ugandan Cancer Organisations
Latest Research Publications related to Uganda

Ugandan Cancer Organisations (10 links)

Latest Research Publications related to Uganda

Kisaakye E, Namakula J, Kihembo C, et al.
Level and factors associated with uptake of human papillomavirus infection vaccine among female adolescents in Lira District, Uganda.
Pan Afr Med J. 2018; 31:184 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
Introduction: the principal burden of human papillomavirus (HPV) infections is cervical cancer. Cervical cancer ranks as the fourth most common malignancy in women affecting 500,000 women each year with an estimated 266,000 deaths. Uganda has one of the highest cervical cancer incidence rates globally with an age-standardised incidence rate per 100,000 of 47.5. This study assessed the level and the factors associated with uptake of HPV vaccine by female adolescents in Lira district, Uganda.
Methods: a mixed methods approach was employed using a survey among 460 female adolescents. We collected data using an interviewer-administered questionnaire. We interviewed five key informants and conducted ten in-depth interviews. Uptake was defined as completing three doses of the vaccine as per the recommended schedule. Prevalence risk ratios were used as measures of association and were computed using modified poison regression. Content analysis was used for qualitative data.
Results: the mean age of the respondents was 13.97 (SD=1.24). Uptake was at 17.61% (81/460). The factors associated with uptake of HPV vaccine were: attaining ordinary level of education (aPR 1.48, 95%CI 1.11-1.97), positive attitude towards the vaccine (aPR 3.46, 95%CI 1.70-7.02), receiving vaccine doses from different vaccination sites (aPR 1.59, 95% CI 1.10-2.28) and encouragement from a health worker (aPR 1.55, 95%CI 1.15-2.11) or Village Health Team (aPR 3.47, 95%CI 1.50-8.02) to go for the vaccine. Other factors associated with uptake of HPV vaccine included; the existence of community outreaches (aPR 1.47, 95%CI 1.02-2.12), availability of vaccines at vaccination sites (aPR 4.84, 95%CI 2.90-8.08) and receiving full information about the vaccine at the vaccination site (aPR 1.90, 95%CI 1.26-2.85).
Conclusion: HPV vaccine uptake was low in Lira district. Efforts to improve uptake of HPV vaccine should focus on ensuring a consistent supply of vaccines at the vaccination sites, health education aimed at creating a positive attitude towards the vaccine, sensitisation of the adolescents about the vaccine and conducting community outreaches.

Aribal E, Mora P, Chaturvedi AK, et al.
Improvement of early detection of breast cancer through collaborative multi-country efforts: Observational clinical study.
Eur J Radiol. 2019; 115:31-38 [PubMed] Related Publications
AIM: The aim of this paper is to present baseline imaging data and the improvement that was achieved by the participating centers after applying practice-specific interventions that were identified during the course of a multicentric multinational research coordinated project.
INTRODUCTION: The incidence and mortality rates from breast cancer are rising worldwide and particularly rapidly across the countries with limited resources. Due to lack of awareness and screening options it is usually detected at a later stage. Breast cancer screening programs and even clinical services on breast cancer have been neglected in such countries particularly due to lack of available equipment, funds, organizational structure and quality criteria.
MATERIALS AND METHODS: A harmonized form was designed in order to facilitate uniformity of data collection. Baseline data such as type of equipment, number of exams, type and number of biopsy procedures, stage of cancer at detection were collected from 10 centers (9 countries: Bosnia-Herzegovina, Costa Rica, Egypt, India, North Macedonia, Pakistan, Slovenia, Turkey, Uganda) were collected. Local practices were evaluated for good practice and specific interventions such as training of professionals and quality assurance programs were identified. The centers were asked to recapture the data after a 2-year period to identify the impact of the interventions.
RESULTS: The data showed increase in the number of training of relevant professionals, positive changes in the mammography practice and image guided interventions. All the centers achieved higher levels of success in the implementation of the quality assurance procedures.
CONCLUSION: The study has encountered different levels of breast imaging practice in terms of expertise, financial and human resources, infrastructure and awareness. The most common challenges were the lack of appropriate quality assurance programs and lack of trained skilled personnel and lack of high-quality equipment. The project was able to create higher levels of breast cancer awareness, collaboration amongst participating centers and professionals. It also improved quality, capability and expertise in breast imaging particularly in centers involved diagnostic imaging.

Lloyd HCM, Arunga S, Twinamasiko A, et al.
Predictors of Ocular Surface Squamous Neoplasia and Conjunctival Squamous Cell Carcinoma among Ugandan Patients: A Hospital-based Study.
Middle East Afr J Ophthalmol. 2018 Jul-Dec; 25(3-4):150-155 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
AIM: The aim of the study was to assess the predictors of ocular surface squamous neoplasia (OSSN) and conjunctival squamous cell carcinoma (SCC) among Ugandan patients.
MATERIALS AND METHODS: Patients presenting for removal of ocular surface lesions received human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) testing, completed questionnaires about demographic, behavioral, and historical potential risk factors for conjunctival neoplasia, and had lesions examined for interpalpebral versus other locations, rough versus smooth texture, and number of feeder vessels. Biopsies were classified pathologically using standard definitions classified OSSN and SCC. HIV rates were calculated for patients: with OSSN, SCC, and benign lesions. Potential risk factors and gross findings were tested for abilities to predict OSSN and SCC.
RESULTS: One hundred and ninety-five patients presented with 212 lesions in 203 eyes. Nearly 34% of the patients were more than 60 years old, 67% were peasants, 88% spent more than 20 h/week outdoors, and only 10% wore sun protection. No potential risk factors predicted neoplasia. HIV prevalence was 17.1% among patients with OSSN compared to 11.1% among those without OSSN; 42.9% among SCC patients compared to 12.0% among those without SCC. Rough tumor surface (adjusted odds ratio [aOR] = 4.4 and 95% confidence interval [CI]: 2.2-9.1), six or more feeder vessels (aOR = 2.6, 95% CI: 1.3-5.2), and interpalpebral tumor location (aOR = 3.3, 95% CI: 1.5-7.1) predicted OSSN. Only a rough tumor surface (aOR = 34.6, 95% CI: 7.8-153.4) predicted SCC.
CONCLUSION: HIV infection remained a risk factor for OSSN and particularly, SCC, but less so than in the past. Lesions' rough surface, six or more feeder vessels, and interpalpebral location increased OSSN risk. Only a rough tumor surface increased risk for SCC.

William W, Ware A, Basaza-Ejiri AH, Obungoloch J
A pap-smear analysis tool (PAT) for detection of cervical cancer from pap-smear images.
Biomed Eng Online. 2019; 18(1):16 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
BACKGROUND: Cervical cancer is preventable if effective screening measures are in place. Pap-smear is the commonest technique used for early screening and diagnosis of cervical cancer. However, the manual analysis of the pap-smears is error prone due to human mistake, moreover, the process is tedious and time-consuming. Hence, it is beneficial to develop a computer-assisted diagnosis tool to make the pap-smear test more accurate and reliable. This paper describes the development of a tool for automated diagnosis and classification of cervical cancer from pap-smear images.
METHOD: Scene segmentation was achieved through a Trainable Weka Segmentation classifier and a sequential elimination approach was used for debris rejection. Feature selection was achieved using simulated annealing integrated with a wrapper filter, while classification was achieved using a fuzzy C-means algorithm.
RESULTS: The evaluation of the classifier was carried out on three different datasets (single cell images, multiple cell images and pap-smear slide images from a pathology lab). Overall classification accuracy, sensitivity and specificity of '98.88%, 99.28% and 97.47%', '97.64%, 98.08% and 97.16%' and '95.00%, 100% and 90.00%' were obtained for each dataset, respectively. The higher accuracy and sensitivity of the classifier was attributed to the robustness of the feature selection method that accurately selected cell features that improved the classification performance and the number of clusters used during defuzzification and classification. Results show that the method outperforms many of the existing algorithms in sensitivity (99.28%), specificity (97.47%), and accuracy (98.88%) when applied to the Herlev benchmark pap-smear dataset. False negative rate, false positive rate and classification error of 0.00%, 10.00% and 5.00%, respectively were obtained when applied to pap-smear slides from a pathology lab.
CONCLUSIONS: The major contribution of this tool in a cervical cancer screening workflow is that it reduces on the time required by the cytotechnician to screen very many pap-smears by eliminating the obvious normal ones, hence more time can be put on the suspicious slides. The proposed system has the capability of analyzing a full pap-smear slide within 3 min as opposed to the 5-10 min per slide in the manual analysis. The tool presented in this paper is applicable to many pap-smear analysis systems but is particularly pertinent to low-cost systems that should be of significant benefit to developing economies.

Park PH, Davey S, Fehr AE, et al.
Patient Characteristics, Early Outcomes, and Implementation Lessons of Cervical Cancer Treatment Services in Rural Rwanda.
J Glob Oncol. 2018; 4:1-11 [PubMed] Related Publications
PURPOSE: Low- and middle-income countries account for 86% of all cervical cancer cases and 88% of cervical cancer mortality globally. Successful management of cervical cancer requires resources that are scarce in sub-Saharan Africa, especially in rural settings. Here, we describe the early clinical outcomes and implementation lessons learned from the Rwanda Ministry of Health's first national cancer referral center, the Butaro Cancer Center of Excellence (BCCOE). We hypothesize that those patients presenting at earlier stage and receiving treatment will have higher rates of being alive.
METHODS: The implementation of cervical cancer services included developing partnerships, clinical protocols, pathology services, and tools for monitoring and evaluation. We conducted a retrospective study of patients with cervical cancer who presented at BCCOE between July 1, 2012, and June 30, 2015. Data were collected from the electronic medical record system and by manually reviewing medical records. Descriptive, bivariable and multivariable statistical analyses were conducted to describe patient demographics, disease profiles, treatment, and clinical outcomes.
RESULTS: In all, 373 patients met the study inclusion criteria. The median age was 53 years (interquartile rage, 45 to 60 years), and 98% were residents of Rwanda. Eighty-nine percent of patients had a documented disease stage: 3% were stage I, 48% were stage II, 29% were stage III, and 8% were stage IV at presentation. Fifty percent of patients were planned to be treated with a curative intent, and 54% were referred to chemoradiotherapy in Uganda. Forty percent of patients who received chemoradiotherapy were in remission. Overall, 25% were lost to follow-up.
CONCLUSION: BCCOE illustrates the feasibility and challenges of implementing effective cervical cancer treatment services in a rural setting in a low-income country.

Derkach A, Otim I, Pfeiffer RM, et al.
Associations between IgG reactivity to Plasmodium falciparum erythrocyte membrane protein 1 (PfEMP1) antigens and Burkitt lymphoma in Ghana and Uganda case-control studies.
EBioMedicine. 2019; 39:358-368 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
BACKGROUND: Endemic Burkitt lymphoma (eBL) is an aggressive childhood B-cell lymphoma linked to Plasmodium falciparum (Pf) malaria in sub-Saharan Africa. We investigated antibody reactivity to several human receptor-binding domains of the Pf erythrocyte membrane protein 1 (PfEMP1) that play a key role in malaria pathogenesis and are targets of acquired immunity to malaria.
METHODS: Serum/plasma IgG antibody reactivity was measured to 22 Pf antigens, including 18 to PfEMP1 CIDR domains between cases and controls from two populations (149 eBL cases and 150 controls from Ghana and 194 eBL cases and 600 controls from Uganda). Adjusted odds ratios (aORs) for case-control associations were estimated by logistic regression.
FINDINGS: There was stronger reactivity to the severe malaria associated CIDRα1 domains than other CIDR domains both in cases and controls. eBL cases reacted to fewer antigens than controls (Ghana: p = 0·001; Uganda: p = 0·03), with statistically significant lower ORs associated with reactivity to 13+ antigens in Ghana (aOR 0·39, 95% CI 0·24-0·63; p
INTERPRETATION: eBL cases reacted to fewer antigens than controls using samples from two populations, Ghana and Uganda. Attenuated humoral immunity to Pf EMP1 may contribute to susceptibility to low-grade malaria and eBL risk.
FUNDING: Intramural Research Program, National Cancer Institute and National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, National Institutes of Health, Department of Health and Human Services.

Ssemmanda S, Katagirya E, Bukirwa P, et al.
Breast diseases histologically diagnosed at a tertiary facility in Uganda (2005-2014).
BMC Cancer. 2018; 18(1):1285 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
BACKGROUND: The prevalence and distribution of histologically diagnosed breast disease are not well documented in low income countries, Uganda inclusive. Although the greater majority of breast lesions globally are benign, breast cancer is the most frequently diagnosed cancer all over the world. We aimed at documenting the prevalence of different breast diseases histologically diagnosed at the histopathology laboratory of the Department of Pathology of the Makerere University College of Health Sciences (MakCHS Lab) over a decade (2005-2014). We also describe the demographic characteristics of the patients in Uganda diagnosed with breast disease at the MakCHS Lab during the same period.
METHODS: This was a 10 year retrospective study of histologically diagnosed breast disease between 2005 and 2014 inclusive at the MakCHS Lab. We extracted information from hard copies of all 2510 histopathology reports retrieved from archives of the Department of Pathology at the MakCHS Lab. 640 records that were either damaged beyond recognition of key details, were duplicated, were implausible or had no conclusive diagnosis made were excluded. Information to be analyzed was then entered into Epidata (version 3.1) on a password protected laptop. Data analysis was done using SPSS software (v16 for Windows × 64).
RESULTS: From the 1870 patients' records eventually analyzed, breast disease was most diagnosed in female patients (97.1%). The overall mean age for breast disease diagnosis was 33 years (S.D ± 16.46) and median age 26 years (IQR: 20-43). Fibroadenoma (40.1%) was the most diagnosed breast disease overall. We noticed steadily increasing frequency of diagnosis of cancerous breast diseases over the last half of the study period. Invasive ductal carcinoma was the most diagnosed breast cancer (326 cases, 55.6%). A high female to male breast cancer ratio of 48:1 was observed. The highest regional breast cancer proportion was from the Western region of the Country.
CONCLUSIONS: There is need for more research into the picture of breast disease in the country, covering various demographic characteristics of the country's population for all regions and informing about its incidence rates and prevalence and also the breast cancer risk estimate for benign breast disease.

Rose TM, Bruce AG, Barcy S, et al.
Quantitative RNAseq analysis of Ugandan KS tumors reveals KSHV gene expression dominated by transcription from the LTd downstream latency promoter.
PLoS Pathog. 2018; 14(12):e1007441 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
KSHV is endemic in Uganda and the HIV epidemic has dramatically increased the incidence of Kaposi sarcoma (KS). To investigate the role of KSHV in the development of KS, we obtained KS biopsies from ART-naïve, HIV-positive individuals in Uganda and analyzed the tumors using RNAseq to globally characterize the KSHV transcriptome. Phylogenetic analysis of ORF75 sequences from 23 tumors revealed 6 distinct genetic clusters with KSHV strains exhibiting M, N or P alleles. RNA reads mapping to specific unique coding sequence (UCDS) features were quantitated using a gene feature file previously developed to globally analyze and quantitate KSHV transcription in infected endothelial cells. A pattern of high level expression was detected in the KSHV latency region that was common to all KS tumors. The clear majority of transcription was derived from the downstream latency transcript promoter P3(LTd) flanking ORF72, with little evidence of transcription from the P1(LTc) latency promoter, which is constitutive in KSHV-infected lymphomas and tissue-culture cells. RNAseq data provided evidence of alternate P3(LTd) transcript editing, splicing and termination resulting in multiple gene products, with 90% of the P3(LTd) transcripts spliced to release the intronic source of the microRNAs K1-9 and 11. The spliced transcripts encode a regulatory uORF upstream of Kaposin A with alterations in intervening repeat sequences yielding novel or deleted Kaposin B/C-like sequences. Hierarchical clustering and PCA analysis of KSHV transcripts revealed three clusters of tumors with different latent and lytic gene expression profiles. Paradoxically, tumors with a latent phenotype had high levels of total KSHV transcription, while tumors with a lytic phenotype had low levels of total KSHV transcription. Morphologically distinct KS tumors from the same individual showed similar KSHV gene expression profiles suggesting that the tumor microenvironment and host response play important roles in the activation level of KSHV within the infected tumor cells.

Lortet-Tieulent J, Franceschi S, Dal Maso L, Vaccarella S
Thyroid cancer "epidemic" also occurs in low- and middle-income countries.
Int J Cancer. 2019; 144(9):2082-2087 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
Thyroid cancer incidence varies greatly between and within high-income countries (HICs), and overdiagnosis likely plays a major role in these differences. Yet, little is known about the situation in low- and middle-income countries (LMICs). We compare up-to-date thyroid cancer incidence and mortality at national and subnational levels. 599,851 thyroid cancer cases in subjects aged 20-74 reported in Cancer Incidence in Five Continents volume XI from 55 countries with at least 0.5 million population, aged 20-74 years, covered by population-based cancer registration, and 22,179 deaths from the WHO Mortality Database for 36 of the selected countries, over 2008-2012, were included. Age-standardized rates were computed. National incidence rates varied 50-fold. Rates were 4 times higher among women than men, with similar patterns between countries. The highest rates (>25 cases per 100,000 women) were observed in the Republic of Korea, Israel, Canada, the United States, Italy, France, and LMICs such as Turkey, Costa Rica, Brazil, and Ecuador. Incidence rates were low (<8) in a few HICs (the Netherlands, the United Kingdom, and Denmark) and lowest (3-4) in some LMICs (such as Uganda and India). Within-country incidence rates varied up to 45-fold, with the largest differences recorded between rural and urban areas in Canada (HIC) and Brazil, India, and China (LMICs). National mortality rates were very low (<2) in all countries and in both sexes, and highest in LMICs. The very high thyroid cancer incidence and low mortality rates in some LMICs also strongly suggest a major role of overdiagnosis in these countries.

Pilleron S, Soerjomataram I, Charvat H, et al.
Cancer incidence in older adults in selected regions of sub-Saharan Africa, 2008-2012.
Int J Cancer. 2019; 144(8):1824-1833 [PubMed] Related Publications
Although the countries of Sub-Sharan Africa represent among the most rapidly growing and aging populations worldwide, no previous studies have examined the cancer patterns in older adults in the region as a means to inform cancer policies. Using data from Cancer Incidence in Five Continents, we describe recent patterns and trends in incidence rates for the major cancer sites in adults aged ≥60 years and in people aged 0-59 for comparison in four selected population-based cancer registries in Kenya (Nairobi), the Republic of South Africa (Eastern Cape Province), Uganda (Kyadondo country), and Zimbabwe (Harare blacks). Over the period 2008-2012, almost 9,000 new cancer cases were registered in older adults in the four populations, representing one-third of all cancer cases. Prostate and esophageal cancers were the leading cancer sites in older males, while breast, cervical and esophageal cancers were the most common among older females. Among younger people, Kaposi sarcoma and non-Hodgkin lymphoma were common. Over the past 20 years, incidence rates among older adults have increased in both sexes in Uganda and Zimbabwe while rates have stabilized among the younger age group. Among older adults, the largest rate increase was observed for breast cancer (estimated annual percentage change: 5% in each country) in females and for prostate cancer (6-7%) in males. Due to the specific needs of older adults, tailored considerations should be given to geriatric oncology when developing, funding and implementing national and regional cancer programmes.

William W, Ware A, Basaza-Ejiri AH, Obungoloch J
A review of image analysis and machine learning techniques for automated cervical cancer screening from pap-smear images.
Comput Methods Programs Biomed. 2018; 164:15-22 [PubMed] Related Publications
BACKGROUND AND OBJECTIVE: Early diagnosis and classification of a cancer type can help facilitate the subsequent clinical management of the patient. Cervical cancer ranks as the fourth most prevalent cancer affecting women worldwide and its early detection provides the opportunity to help save life. To that end, automated diagnosis and classification of cervical cancer from pap-smear images has become a necessity as it enables accurate, reliable and timely analysis of the condition's progress. This paper presents an overview of the state of the art as articulated in prominent recent publications focusing on automated detection of cervical cancer from pap-smear images.
METHODS: The survey reviews publications on applications of image analysis and machine learning in automated diagnosis and classification of cervical cancer from pap-smear images spanning 15 years. The survey reviews 30 journal papers obtained electronically through four scientific databases (Google Scholar, Scopus, IEEE and Science Direct) searched using three sets of keywords: (1) segmentation, classification, cervical cancer; (2) medical imaging, machine learning, pap-smear; (3) automated system, classification, pap-smear.
RESULTS: Most of the existing algorithms facilitate an accuracy of nearly 93.78% on an open pap-smear data set, segmented using CHAMP digital image software. K-nearest-neighbors and support vector machines algorithms have been reported to be excellent classifiers for cervical images with accuracies of over 99.27% and 98.5% respectively when applied to a 2-class classification problem (normal or abnormal).
CONCLUSION: The reviewed papers indicate that there are still weaknesses in the available techniques that result in low accuracy of classification in some classes of cells. Moreover, most of the existing algorithms work either on single or on multiple cervical smear images. This accuracy can be increased by varying various parameters such as the features to be extracted, improvement in noise removal, using hybrid segmentation and classification techniques such of multi-level classifiers. Combining K-nearest-neighbors algorithm with other algorithm(s) such as support vector machines, pixel level classifications and including statistical shape models can also improve performance. Further, most of the developed classifiers are tested on accurately segmented images using commercially available software such as CHAMP software. There is thus a deficit of evidence that these algorithms will work in clinical settings found in developing countries (where 85% of cervical cancer incidences occur) that lack sufficient trained cytologists and the funds to buy the commercial segmentation software.

Tsu VD, Njama-Meya D, Lim J, et al.
Opportunities and challenges for introducing HPV testing for cervical cancer screening in sub-Saharan Africa.
Prev Med. 2018; 114:205-208 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
To protect women against cervical cancer, the World Health Organization recommends that women aged 30 to 49 years be screened with tests that detect human papillomavirus (HPV). If the countries that have the greatest burden of this disease-especially those in sub-Saharan Africa-are not to be left behind, we must understand the challenges they face and identify measures that can help them take full advantage now of innovations that are transforming screening services in wealthier countries. We reviewed policy documents and published literature related to Kenya, Tanzania, and Uganda, and met with key personnel from government and nongovernmental organizations. National policy makers understand the value of HPV testing in terms of its superior sensitivity and the programmatic advantages that could result from using self-collected samples. However, while these countries have national cervical cancer prevention strategies, and some have national departments or units for cervical cancer prevention, screening is rare, funding scarce, and quality low. Age guidelines are not strictly followed, with scarce resources being used to screen many women younger than the recommended ages. Published evidence of the benefits of HPV testing-including performance, safety, and cost-effectiveness-must be provided to ministry of health leaders, along with information on anticipated costs for training personnel, purchasing supplies, providing facility space, and maintaining test kits. Despite the obstacles, a joint effort on the part of global and national stakeholders to introduce molecular screening methods can bring better protection to the women who need it most.

Birnbaum JK, Duggan C, Anderson BO, Etzioni R
Early detection and treatment strategies for breast cancer in low-income and upper middle-income countries: a modelling study.
Lancet Glob Health. 2018; 6(8):e885-e893 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
BACKGROUND: Poor breast cancer survival in low-income and middle-income countries (LMICs) can be attributed to advanced-stage presentation and poor access to systemic therapy. We aimed to estimate the outcomes of different early detection strategies in combination with systemic chemotherapy and endocrine therapy in LMICs.
METHODS: We adapted a microsimulation model to project outcomes of three early detection strategies alone or in combination with three systemic treatment programmes beyond standard of care (programme A): programme B was endocrine therapy for all oestrogen-receptor (ER)-positive cases; programme C was programme B plus chemotherapy for ER-negative cases; programme D was programme C plus chemotherapy for advanced ER-positive cases. The main outcomes were reductions in breast cancer-related mortality and lives saved per 100 000 women relative to the standard of care for women aged 30-49 years in a low-income setting (East Africa; using incidence data and life tables from Uganda and data on tumour characteristics from various East African countries) and for women aged 50-69 years in a middle-income setting (Colombia).
FINDINGS: In the East African setting, relative mortality reductions were 8-41%, corresponding to 23 (95% uncertainty interval -12 to 49) to 114 (80 to 138) lives saved per 100 000 women over 10 years. In Colombia, mortality reductions were 7-25%, corresponding to 32 (-29 to 70) to 105 (61 to 141) lives saved per 100 000 women over 10 years.
INTERPRETATION: The best projected outcomes were in settings where access to both early detection and adjuvant therapy is improved. Even in the absence of mammographic screening, improvements in detection can provide substantial benefit in settings where advanced-stage presentation is common.
FUNDING: Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center/University of Washington Cancer Consortium Cancer Center Support Grant of the US National Institutes of Health.

Joko-Fru WY, Parkin DM, Borok M, et al.
Survival from childhood cancers in Eastern Africa: A population-based registry study.
Int J Cancer. 2018; 143(10):2409-2415 [PubMed] Related Publications
Cancers occurring in children in Africa are often underdiagnosed, or at best diagnosed late. As a result, survival is poor, even for cancers considered 'curable'. With limited population-level data, understanding the actual burden and survival from childhood cancers in Africa is difficult. In this study, we aimed at providing survival estimates for the most common types of cancers affecting children aged 0-14 years, in three population-based Eastern African registries; Harare, Zimbabwe (Kaposi sarcoma, Wilms tumour (WT), non-Hodgkin lymphoma (NHL), retinoblastoma, and acute lymphocytic leukaemia (ALL)), Kampala, Uganda (Burkitt lymphoma, Kaposi sarcoma, WT, and retinoblastoma), and Nairobi, Kenya (ALL, retinoblastoma, WT, Burkitt lymphoma, and Hodgkin lymphoma). We included cases diagnosed within the years 1998-2009 and followed up till the end of 2011. We estimated the observed and relative survival at 1, 3, and 5 years after diagnosis. We studied 627 individual patient records. Median follow-up ranged from 2.2 months for children with Kaposi sarcoma in Harare to 30.2 months for children with ALL in Nairobi. The proportion of children lost to follow-up was highest in the first year after diagnosis. In Harare and Kampala, the 5-year relative survival was <46% for all cancer types. The 5-year relative survival was best for children in Nairobi, though with wider confidence intervals. Survival from childhood cancers in Africa is still poor, even for cancers with good prognosis and potential for cure. Supporting cancer detection, treatment, and registration activities could help improve survival chances for children with cancers in Africa.

McKenzie F, Zietsman A, Galukande M, et al.
Breast cancer awareness in the sub-Saharan African ABC-DO cohort: African Breast Cancer-Disparities in Outcomes study.
Cancer Causes Control. 2018; 29(8):721-730 [PubMed] Related Publications
A greater understanding of the nature and drivers of poor breast cancer (BC) awareness in sub-Saharan Africa (SSA) will inform much needed awareness programmes. We aimed to assess the level and nature of BC awareness in the multi-country African Breast Cancer-Disparities in Outcome (ABC-DO) cohort of women newly diagnosed with BC during 2014-2017. Awareness indicators were assessed during a baseline interview at/near diagnosis. Logistic/ordinal regression was used to estimate odds ratios (OR) for indicators of BC awareness in relation to woman-level characteristics for individual settings and then meta-analyzed. In the 1,451 women included, almost all Namibian non-black women (n = 104) knew of BC and its curability, while in Namibian black and Zambian women, one in 7 (~ 15%) had not previously heard of BC and 25-40% did not know it was curable. In Uganda and Nigeria awareness was lowest: one in four women had no BC awareness, and 2 in 3 had no knowledge of its cure potential. Low educational level, unskilled employment, low socioeconomic position, rural residence, older age, being unmarried, and in some settings HIV-positivity, were associated with lower BC awareness-e.g., having unskilled employment was associated with not having heard of BC (summary OR 3.37; 95% confidence interval (CI) 2.17-5.23), believing that it is incurable (2.43; 1.81-3.26), and not recognizing a breast lump symptom (1.85; 1.41-2.43) but with between-setting variation (I

Obayo S, Lukwago L, Orem J, et al.
Gastrointestinal malignancies at five regional referral hospitals in Uganda.
Afr Health Sci. 2017; 17(4):1051-1058 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
Background: There is a paucity of published data regarding the trend and distribution of gastrointestinal malignancies in Uganda.
Objectives: To study the trend and distribution of gastrointestinal malignancies over a 10 year period at five regional referral hospitals in Uganda.
Methods: Patient's charts with histologically confirmed diagnoses of gastrointestinal malignancies for the period 2002-2011 were identified. Case information, which included age at diagnosis, sex, and year of diagnosis, primary anatomic site of the tumour and hospitals attended, was retrospectively abstracted. Patient's clinical and demographic features were compared.
Results: Oesophageal cancer was the most common (28.8%) followed by liver (25.8%), stomach (18.4%) and colorectal (14.3%). The mean age at diagnosis for all the cancers was not significantly different in both sexes 54.1, (SD16.1) versus 53.6, (SD 14.7). The highest mean annual number of cases of oesophageal and stomach cancers was 21.8, (SD 15.5) and 16.6, (SD 13.0) respectively from Mbarara Hospital; Lacor had the highest mean annual number of liver cancer cases (21, SD 17.7) followed by Mbale (11.4, SD 8.3). The mean annual number of colorectal cancers was highest in Mbale Hospital (10.3, SD 8.1) followed by Lacor (4.9, SD 3.9). The distribution of oesophageal, liver, stomach and colorectal cancers diagnosed per year across the five referral hospitals was different, P<0.001.
Conclusion: Oesophageal, liver, stomach and colorectal cancer remain the most common gastrointestinal malignancies and their rate is increasing in Uganda. There is a need for awareness, endoscopic and radiological assessment of symptomatic individuals and a need for screening of high index patients.

Aisagbonhi O, Birungi A, Atwine R, et al.
Modified Plasma-Thrombin Method of Cell Block Preparation for Fine-Needle Aspiration Biopsies in Resource-Limited Settings.
Am J Clin Pathol. 2018; 150(2):137-145 [PubMed] Related Publications
Objectives: The plasma-thrombin method is commonly used to make cell blocks from fine-needle aspiration (FNA) samples but requires centrifugation. We describe a modification to this method that does not require centrifugation for use in resource-limited settings.
Methods: Pooled fresh plasma is aliquoted into 2-mL Eppendorf tubes and the FNA sample directly rinsed into the plasma. Two drops of reconstituted thrombin are added and gently mixed. A cell clot is transferred to a tissue bag, fixed in formalin, and processed. This method was applied to FNA samples from 44 patients presenting to the Mbarara University of Science and Technology FNA clinic.
Results: The cell blocks were less cellular than the smears but contained adequate material to confirm morphologic impression or perform immunocytochemistry in 36 of 44 cases (82% adequacy rate).
Conclusions: The modified plasma-thrombin method is a reliable cell block preparation method that can be easily applied in resource-limited settings.

Burger EA, Campos NG, Sy S, et al.
Health and economic benefits of single-dose HPV vaccination in a Gavi-eligible country.
Vaccine. 2018; 36(32 Pt A):4823-4829 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
BACKGROUND: Although guidelines for prophylactic human papillomavirus (HPV) vaccination recommend two doses for girls ages 9-14 years, several studies have demonstrated similar protection with one dose. Our objective was to evaluate the long-term health and economic impacts of routine one-dose HPV vaccination compared to (1) no vaccination and (2) two-dose HPV vaccination in a low-income country.
METHODS: We used a three-tiered hybrid modeling approach that captured HPV transmission, cervical carcinogenesis, and population demographics to project long-term health and economic outcomes associated with one-dose HPV vaccination (assuming 80% efficacy against HPV-16/18 infections under three waning scenarios) and two-dose HPV vaccination (assuming 100% efficacy over the lifetime) in Uganda. Costs included the vaccine program (dosage and delivery) costs over a 10-year period and cervical cancer costs over the lifetimes of the current population of Ugandan women. Health outcomes included number of cervical cancer cases and disability-adjusted life years (DALYs). Incremental cost-effectiveness ratios (i.e., cost per DALY averted) were calculated and compared against the Ugandan per-capita gross domestic product.
RESULTS: Routine one-dose HPV vaccination of 9-year-old girls required substantial upfront investment but was cost-saving compared to no vaccination when accounting for the cost-offsets from future cancers averted. Forty years after initiating routine vaccination and depending on assumptions of vaccine waning, one-dose HPV vaccination with equivalent coverage (70%) averted 15-16% of cervical cancer cases versus 21% with two-dose vaccination but required only half the upfront economic investment. Vaccination with two doses had an attractive cost-effectiveness profile except if one-dose vaccination enabled higher coverage (90% vs. 70%) and did not wane.
CONCLUSIONS: One-dose HPV vaccination resulted in cost-savings compared to no vaccination and could be cost-effective compared to two-dose vaccination if protection is longstanding and higher coverage can be achieved.

Mwaka AD, Okello ES, Wabinga H
Perceptions and beliefs of lay people from northern Uganda regarding surgery for diagnosis and treatment of cervical cancer.
Psychooncology. 2018; 27(8):1965-1970 [PubMed] Related Publications
OBJECTIVE: To explore perceptions and beliefs of people in a rural community in northern Uganda regarding surgery for the diagnosis and treatment of cervical cancer. The aim of the study was to inform interventions to reduce delay and improve timely diagnosis and prompt appropriate treatments for patients with symptoms of cervical cancer.
METHODS: A semi-structured study guide informed by Kleinman's explanatory model for illness was used to collect data during 24 focus group discussions involving 175 men and women aged 18 to 59 years in Gulu, northern Uganda. Using thematic analysis, themes and subthemes were identified from the data through an iterative process and consensus among the authors.
RESULTS: Surgery for diagnosis and management of cervical cancer was perceived as (1) appropriate when performed at early stage of cancer and by senior doctors, but (2) a potential catalyst for the spread of cancer and early death; and (3) a challenge to childbearing and motherhood as well as a source of distress to women and families if surgery involved removal of the uterus with subsequent permanent infertility.
CONCLUSIONS: There are some negative perceptions about surgery for cervical cancer that may deter prompt help-seeking for symptoms. However, targeted messages for public awareness interventions to promote help-seeking can be built on the positive perceptions and beliefs that surgery could be curative when undertaken for early-stage cancer and by skilled doctors.

Atuhairwe C, Amongin D, Agaba E, et al.
The effect of knowledge on uptake of breast cancer prevention modalities among women in Kyadondo County, Uganda.
BMC Public Health. 2018; 18(1):279 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
BACKGROUND: Breast cancer, the third most frequent cancer of women is preventable through knowledge on breast self-examination. Of the 44% of women diagnosed with breast cancer at the Uganda Cancer Institute, only 22% go for check-up in less than three months. This study explored the effect of breast cancer knowledge on the uptake of breast cancer prevention modalities among women in Kyadondo County, Uganda.
METHODS: A household survey of women in Kyadondo County was conducted during June, 2014 to August, 2015. This involved studying in-depth using a questionnaire the level of breast cancer knowledge of the respondents. Data was analyzed using logistic regression model. Chi-square test was used to establish relationships between knowledge base factors and the uptake of breast cancer prevention modalities.
RESULTS: This study has established an empirical relationship between uptake of breast cancer prevention modalities and source of information especially radio (OR 1.94 95% CI: 1.16-3.24), television (OR 1.82 95%CI: 1.14-2.93), awareness of breast cancer (OR 4.03 95%CI: 1.01-15.98), knowledge on how to reduce risk of breast cancer (OR 1.98 95% CI: 1.20-3.27), what reduces breast cancer acquisition (OR 2.75 95% CI: 1.42-5.35), how to check for signs of breast cancer especially through breast self-examination (OR 3.09 95% CI: 1.62-5.88), and other methods of breast cancer diagnosis in a health care set up.
CONCLUSION: The women's level of breast cancer awareness as a primary prevention strategy was found wanting, and requires a boost through community health education.

Middleton DRS, Bouaoun L, Hanisch R, et al.
Esophageal cancer male to female incidence ratios in Africa: A systematic review and meta-analysis of geographic, time and age trends.
Cancer Epidemiol. 2018; 53:119-128 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
Esophageal squamous cell carcinoma (ESCC) remains the predominant histological subtype of esophageal cancer (EC) in many transitioning countries, with an enigmatic and geographically distinct etiology, and consistently elevated incidence rates in many Eastern and Southern African countries. To gain epidemiological insights into ESCC patterns across the continent, we conducted a systematic review and meta-analysis of male-to-female (M:F) sex ratios of EC age-standardised (world) incidence rates in Africa according to geography, time and age at diagnosis. Data from 197 populations in 36 countries were included in the analysis, based on data from cancer registries included in IARC's Cancer Incidence in Five Continents, Cancer in Africa and Cancer in Sub-Saharan Africa reports, alongside a systematic search of peer-reviewed literature. A consistent male excess in incidence rates overall (1.7; 95% CI: 1.4, 2.0), and in the high-risk Eastern (1.6; 95% CI: 1.4, 1.8) and Southern (1.8; 95% CI: 1.5, 2.0) African regions was observed. Within the latter two regions, there was a male excess evident in 30-39 year olds that was not observed in low-risk regions. Despite possible referral biases affecting the interpretability of the M:F ratios in place and time, the high degree of heterogeneity in ESCC incidence implies a large fraction of the disease is preventable, and directs research enquiries to elucidate early-age exposures among young men in Africa.

Menon M, Coghill A, Mutyaba I, et al.
Whom to treat? Factors associated with chemotherapy recommendations and outcomes among patients with NHL at the Uganda Cancer Institute.
PLoS One. 2018; 13(2):e0191967 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
INTRODUCTION: Cancer treatment options in sub-Saharan Africa are scarce despite an increasing burden of disease. Identification of those cancer patients who would benefit most from the limited resources available would allow broader and more effective therapy.
METHODS: We conducted a retrospective analysis of patients over the age of 18 at the time of a pathologic diagnosis of NHL between 2003 and 2010 who were residents of Kyandondo County (Uganda) and presented to the Uganda Cancer Institute for care.
RESULTS: A total of 128 patients were included in this analysis. Chemotherapy was recommended to 117 (91.4%) of the patients; the odds of recommending chemotherapy decreased for each additional month of reported symptoms prior to diagnosis. Of the 117 patients to whom chemotherapy was recommended, 111 (86.7%) patients received at least 1 cycle of chemotherapy; HIV infected patients, as well as those with a lower hemoglobin and advanced disease at the time of diagnosis were significantly less likely to complete therapy. Among the patients who initiated chemotherapy, twenty patients died prior to treatment completion (including nine who died within 30 days). Hemoglobin level at the time of presentation was the only variable associated with early mortality in the adjusted model.
CONCLUSION: In resource-poor areas, it is essential to align health care expenditures with interventions likely to provide benefit to affected populations. Targeting cancer therapy to those with a favorable chance of responding will not only save limited resources, but will also prevent harm in those patients unlikely to realize an effect of cancer-directed therapy.

Coghill AE, Schenk JM, Mahkoul Z, et al.
Omega-3 decreases IL-6 levels in HIV and human herpesvirus-8 coinfected patients in Uganda.
AIDS. 2018; 32(4):505-512 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
OBJECTIVE: Kaposi sarcoma is a HIV-associated malignancy caused by human herpesvirus-8 (HHV-8) that occurs at highest incidence in sub-Saharan Africa. Kaposi sarcoma patients often present with inflammatory symptoms associated with higher mortality.
DESIGN: We conducted a double-blind, randomized, placebo-controlled study in Uganda to test whether omega-3 supplementation could reduce inflammation in HIV and HHV-8 coinfected adults. Patients with acute illness, AIDS, or advanced Kaposi sarcoma were ineligible, as were pregnant women. Participant IDs were pre-randomized, blocked by Kaposi sarcoma status, to either the omega-3 or placebo arm.
METHODS: Omega-3 participants received a 3-g pill dose daily for 12 weeks (1.8-g eicosapentaenoic acid, 1.2-mg docosapentaenoic acid); placebo participants received 44.8 mg of high oleic safflower oil that appeared indistinguishable from the active supplement. Intervention effects were evaluated as the baseline-adjusted mean difference after 12 weeks between omega-3 and placebo participants in concentrations of fatty acids, inflammatory cytokines, and immune cells.
RESULTS: The final study population included 56 Kaposi sarcoma patients and 11 Kaposi sarcoma-negative, HIV and HHV-8-positive participants randomized to receive either omega-3 (N = 33) or placebo (N = 34). Inflammatory cytokine IL-6 concentrations decreased in omega-3 participants (-0.78 pg/ml) but increased in placebo participants (+3.2 pg/ml; P = 0.04). We observed a trend toward decreased IL-6 after omega-3 supplementation specific to Kaposi sarcoma patients (P = 0.08). CD8 T-cell counts tended to increase in the omega-3 arm Kaposi sarcoma patients (+60 cells/μl), in contrast to decreases (-47 cells/μl) among placebo (P = 0.11).
CONCLUSION: Omega-3 supplementation decreased IL-6 concentrations among HIV and HHV-8 coinfected Ugandans, which may have clinical benefit for Kaposi sarcoma patients.

Ilaboya D, Gibson L, Musoke D
Perceived barriers to early detection of breast cancer in Wakiso District, Uganda using a socioecological approach.
Global Health. 2018; 14(1):9 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
BACKGROUND: Early detection of breast cancer is known to improve its prognosis. However, women in most low and middle income countries, including Uganda, do not detect it early hence present at an advanced stage. This study investigated the perceived barriers to early detection of breast cancer in Wakiso district, Uganda using a multilevel approach focused through a socioecological framework.
METHODS: Using qualitative methods, participants were purposively selected to take part in the study. 5 semi-structured interviews were conducted among the community members while two focus groups were conducted amongst women's group and community health workers (CHWs) in Ssisa sub county, Wakiso district. In addition, 7 key informant interviews with health professionals, policy makers and public health researchers were carried out.
RESULTS: Findings from the study revealed that barriers to early detection of breast cancer are multifaceted and complex, cutting across individual, interpersonal, organizational, community and policy barriers. The major themes that emerged from the study included: knowledge, attitudes, beliefs and practices (KABP); health system and policy constraints; and structural barriers. Prominent barriers associated with KABP were low knowledge, apathy, fear and poor health seeking behaviours. Barriers within the health systems and policy arenas were mostly centred around competing health care burdens within the country, lack of a cancer policy and weak primary health care capacity in Wakiso district. Distance, poverty and limited access to media were identified as the most prominent structural barriers.
CONCLUSION: Barriers to early detection of breast cancer are complex and go beyond individual behaviours. These barriers interact across multiple levels of influence such as organizational, community and policy. The findings of this study could provide opportunities for investment in multi-level interventions.

Du Z, Lubmawa A, Gundell S, et al.
Genetic risk of prostate cancer in Ugandan men.
Prostate. 2018; 78(5):370-376 [PubMed] Related Publications
BACKGROUND: Men of African-ancestry have elevated prostate cancer (PCa) incidence and mortality compared to men of other racial groups. There is support for a genetic contribution to this disparity, with evidence of genetic heterogeneity in the underlying risk alleles between populations. Studies of PCa among African men may inform the contribution of genetic risk factors to the elevated disease burden in this population.
METHODS: We conducted an association study of >100 previously reported PCa risk alleles among 571 incidence cases and 485 controls among Uganda men. Unconditional logistic regression was used to test genetic associations and a polygenic risk score (PRS) was derived to assess the cumulative effect of the known risk alleles in association with PCa risk. In an exploratory analysis, we also tested associations of 17 125 421 genotyped and imputed markers genome-wide in association with PCa risk.
RESULTS: Of the 111 known risk loci with a frequency >1%, 75 (68%) had effects that were directionally consistent with the initial discovery population,14 (13%) of which were nominally significantly associated with PCa risk at P < 0.05. Compared to men with average risk (25
CONCLUSIONS: The ∼100 known PCa risk variants were shown to effectively stratify PCa risk in Ugandan men, with 10% of men having a >4-fold increase in risk. The 8q24 risk region was also found to be a major contributor to PCa risk in Ugandan men, with the African ancestry-specific risk variant rs72725854 estimated to account for 12% of PCa in this population.

Ravell J, Otim I, Nabalende H, et al.
Plasma magnesium is inversely associated with Epstein-Barr virus load in peripheral blood and Burkitt lymphoma in Uganda.
Cancer Epidemiol. 2018; 52:70-74 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
BACKGROUND: Epstein-Barr virus (EBV) causes endemic Burkitt lymphoma (eBL). EBV control was improved by magnesium (Mg
METHODS: Plasma Mg
RESULTS: Plasma Mg

Low D, Merkel EC, Menon M, et al.
Chemotherapy Use at the End of Life in Uganda.
J Glob Oncol. 2017; 3(6):711-719 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
Purpose Avoiding chemotherapy during the last 30 days of life has become a goal of cancer care in the United States and Europe, yet end-of-life chemotherapy administration remains a common practice worldwide. The purpose of this study was to determine the frequency of and factors predicting end-of-life chemotherapy administration in Uganda. Methods Retrospective chart review and surveys and interviews of providers were performed at the Uganda Cancer Institute (UCI), the only comprehensive cancer center in the area, which serves a catchment area of greater than 100 million people. All adult patients at the UCI with reported cancer deaths between January 1, 2014, and August 31, 2015 were included. All UCI physicians were offered a survey, and a subset of physicians were also individually interviewed. Results Three hundred ninety-two patients (65.9%) received chemotherapy. Age less than 55 years (odds ratio [OR], 2.30; P = .004), a cancer diagnosis greater than 60 days before death (OR, 9.13; P < .001), and a presenting Eastern Cooperative Oncology Group performance status of 0 to 2 (OR, 2.47; P = .001) were associated with the administration of chemotherapy. More than 45% of patients received chemotherapy in the last 30 days of life. No clinical factors were predictive of chemotherapy use in the last 30 days of life, although doctors reported using performance status, cancer stage, and tumor chemotherapy sensitivity to determine when to administer chemotherapy. Patient expectations and a lack of outcomes data were important nonclinical factors influencing chemotherapy administration. Conclusion Chemotherapy is administered to a high proportion of patients with terminal cancer in Uganda, raising concern about efficacy. Late presentation of cancer in Uganda complicates end-of-life chemotherapy recommendations, necessitating guidelines specific to sub-Saharan Africa.

McKenzie F, Zietsman A, Galukande M, et al.
Drivers of advanced stage at breast cancer diagnosis in the multicountry African breast cancer - disparities in outcomes (ABC-DO) study.
Int J Cancer. 2018; 142(8):1568-1579 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
Breast cancer (BC) survival rates in sub-Saharan Africa (SSA) are low in part due to advanced stage at diagnosis. As one component of a study of the entire journey of SSA women with BC, we aimed to identify shared and setting-specific drivers of advanced stage BC. Women newly diagnosed in the multicountry African Breast Cancer-Disparities in Outcomes (ABC-DO) study completed a baseline interview and their stage information was extracted from medical records. Ordinal logistic regression was used to estimate odds ratios (OR) and 95% confidence intervals (CI) for advanced stage (I, II, III, IV) in relation to individual woman-level, referral and biological factors. A total of 1795 women were included from Nigeria, Uganda, Zambia, and the multiracial populations of Namibia and South Africa, 1091 of whom (61%) were stage III/IV. Stage was lower in women with greater BC knowledge (OR 0.77 (95% CI: 0.70, 0.85) per point on a 6 point scale). More advanced stage was associated with being black (4.00 (2.79, 5.74)), having attended

Dochez C, Burnett RJ, Mbassi SM, et al.
Improving skills and institutional capacity to strengthen adolescent immunisation programmes and health systems in African countries through HPV vaccine introduction.
Papillomavirus Res. 2017; 4:66-71 [PubMed] Related Publications
Several African countries have recently introduced or are currently introducing the HPV vaccine, either nationwide or through demonstration projects, while some countries are planning for introduction. A collaborative project was developed to strengthen country adolescent immunisation programmes and health systems in the African Region, addressing unique public health considerations of HPV vaccination: adolescents as the primary target group, delivery platforms (e.g. school-based and facility based), socio-behavioural issues, and the opportunity to deliver other health interventions alongside HPV vaccination. Following a successful "taking-stock" meeting, a training programme was drafted to assist countries to strengthen the integration of adolescent health interventions using HPV vaccination as an entry point. Two workshops were conducted in the Eastern and Southern African Regions. All countries reported on progress made during a final joint symposium. Of the 20 countries invited to participate in either of the workshops and/or final symposium, 17 countries participated: Angola, Botswana, Ethiopia, Kenya, Malawi, Mauritius, Mozambique, Namibia, Rwanda, Seychelles, South Africa, South Sudan, Swaziland, Tanzania, Uganda, Zambia and Zimbabwe. Countries that are currently implementing HPV vaccination programmes, either nationally or through demonstration projects, reported varying degrees of integration with other adolescent health interventions. The most commonly reported adolescent health interventions alongside HPV vaccination include health education (including sexually transmitted infections), deworming and delivering of other vaccines like tetanus toxoid (TT) or tetanus diphtheria (Td). The project has successfully (a) established an African-based network that will advocate for incorporating the HPV vaccine into national immunisation programmes; (b) created a platform for experience exchange and thereby contributed to novel ideas of revitalising and strengthening school-based health programmes as delivery platform of adolescent immunisation services and other adolescent health interventions, as well as identifying ways of reaching out-of-school girls through facility and community based programmes; and (c) laid a foundation for incorporating future adolescent vaccination programmes.

Li M, Nyabigambo A, Navvuga P, et al.
Acceptability of cervical cancer screening using visual inspection among women attending a childhood immunization clinic in Uganda.
Papillomavirus Res. 2017; 4:17-21 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
OBJECTIVE: To evaluate the acceptability and performance of cervical cancer (CC) screening using visual inspection with acetic acid (VIA) integrated into a rural immunization clinic in Uganda.
METHODS/MATERIALS: We conducted a cross-sectional pilot study in rural Uganda. We explored associations between women's characteristics and acceptance of VIA testing. We collected samples for Papanicolaou (Pap) smear testing in a random subset of women and used results from this test as a comparator for assessing VIA performance.
RESULTS: We enrolled 625 women of whom 571 (91.4%) accepted and 54 (8.6%) refused CC screening. In the univariate model, age (Odds Ratio (OR)=1.10; p-value<0.001) and employment status (OR 2.00; p-value=0.019) were significantly associated with acceptance of VIA screening. In the multivariate model, no characteristic was independently associated with acceptance of VIA screening after adjusting for other factors. Compared to reference Pap smear, CC screening with VIA had a sensitivity of 50% and a specificity of 97.7%.
CONCLUSIONS: CC screening with VIA is highly acceptable in the setting of rural immunization clinics in Uganda. Studies to assess which screening method would be the most effective and cost-effective are needed before stakeholders can consider adopting screening programs at scale.

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