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Canada: cancer statistics from IARC GlobalCan (2012)

Population in 2012: 34.7m
People newly diagnosed with cancer (excluding NMSC) / yr: 182,200
Age-standardised rate, incidence per 100,000 people/yr: 295.7
Risk of getting cancer before age 75:29.1%
People dying from cancer /yr: 74,100

Menu: Canadian Cancer Resources Directory


National Organisations: Canada
Cancer Centers
Latest Research Publications from Canada
Alberta / Northwest Territories
British Columbia / Yukon Territory
Manitoba
New Brunswick
Newfoundland
Nova Scotia
Nunavut
Ontario
Prince Edward Islands
Quebec
Saskatchewan

National Organisations: Canada (19 links)


Cancer Centers (17 links)


Latest Research Publications from Canada

Sutradhar R, Atzema C, Seow H, et al.
Is performance status associated with symptom scores? A population-based longitudinal study among cancer outpatients.
J Palliat Care. 2014; 30(2):99-107 [PubMed] Related Publications
BACKGROUND: Symptom scores and performance status are both important measures for patients with cancer. However, since performance status is not often part of routinely collected data, there is interest in exploring whether it can be calculated from symptom scores.
METHODS: This was a population-based longitudinal study of cancer outpatients in Ontario, Canada in the year following their cancer diagnosis and among the subset of patients during the last year of their lives.
RESULTS: In the first year after diagnosis, there was a significant relationship between performance status and fatigue and appetite; fatigue and well-being had a significant association with performance status in the last year of life. In both periods, the associations, although statistically significant, were not large enough to be clinically meaningful.
CONCLUSION: Performance status is an important measurement that cannot be substituted or captured with symptom scores; it is important for healthcare providers to record performance scores on a regular basis.

Related: Cancer Prevention and Risk Reduction


Brenner H, Stock C, Hoffmeister M
Effect of screening sigmoidoscopy and screening colonoscopy on colorectal cancer incidence and mortality: systematic review and meta-analysis of randomised controlled trials and observational studies.
BMJ. 2014; 348:g2467 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
OBJECTIVES: To review, summarise, and compare the evidence for effectiveness of screening sigmoidoscopy and screening colonoscopy in the prevention of colorectal cancer occurrence and deaths.
DESIGN: Systematic review and meta-analysis of randomised controlled trials and observational studies.
DATA SOURCES: PubMed, Embase, and Web of Science. Two investigators independently extracted characteristics and results of identified studies and performed standardised quality ratings.
ELIGIBILITY CRITERIA: Randomised controlled trials and observational studies in English on the impact of screening sigmoidoscopy and screening colonoscopy on colorectal cancer incidence and mortality in the general population at average risk.
RESULTS: For screening sigmoidoscopy, four randomised controlled trials and 10 observational studies were identified that consistently found a major reduction in distal but not proximal colorectal cancer incidence and mortality. Summary estimates of reduction in distal colorectal cancer incidence and mortality were 31% (95% confidence intervals 26% to 37%) and 46% (33% to 57%) in intention to screen analysis, 42% (29% to 53%) and 61% (27% to 79%) in per protocol analysis of randomised controlled trials, and 64% (50% to 74%) and 66% (38% to 81%) in observational studies. For screening colonoscopy, evidence was restricted to six observational studies, the results of which suggest tentatively an even stronger reduction in distal colorectal cancer incidence and mortality, along with a significant reduction in mortality from cancer of the proximal colon. Indirect comparisons of results of observational studies on screening sigmoidoscopy and colonoscopy suggest a 40% to 60% lower risk of incident colorectal cancer and death from colorectal cancer after screening colonoscopy even though this incremental risk reduction was statistically significant for deaths from cancer of the proximal colon only.
CONCLUSIONS: Compelling and consistent evidence from randomised controlled trials and observational studies suggests that screening sigmoidoscopy and screening colonoscopy prevent most deaths from distal colorectal cancer. Observational studies suggest that colonoscopy compared with flexible sigmoidoscopy decreases mortality from cancer of the proximal colon. This added value should be examined in further research and weighed against the higher costs, discomfort, complication rates, capacities needed, and possible differences in compliance.

Related: Cancer Screening and Early Detection USA
Division of Clinical Epidemiology and Aging Research, German Cancer Research Center, INF 581, 69120 Heidelberg, Germany German Cancer Consortium, Heidelberg, Germany


Chevarie-Davis M, Riazalhosseini Y, Arseneault M, et al.
The morphologic and immunohistochemical spectrum of papillary renal cell carcinoma: study including 132 cases with pure type 1 and type 2 morphology as well as tumors with overlapping features.
Am J Surg Pathol. 2014; 38(7):887-94 [PubMed] Related Publications
Papillary renal cell carcinomas (pRCC) are classically divided into type 1 and 2 tumors. However, many cases do not fulfill all the criteria for either type. We describe the clinical, morphologic, and immunohistochemical (IHC) features of 132 pRCCs to better characterize the frequency and nature of tumors with overlapping features. Cases were reviewed and classified; IHC evaluation of CK7, EMA, TopoIIα, napsin A, and AMACR was performed on 95 cases. The frequencies of type 1, type 2, and "overlapping" pRCC were 25%, 28%, and 47%, respectively. The 2 categories of "overlapping" tumors were: (1) cases with bland cuboidal cells but no basophilic cytoplasm (type A); and (2) cases with predominantly type 1 histology admixed with areas showing prominent nucleoli (type B). The pathologic stage of "overlapping" cases showed concordance with type 1 tumors. Using the 2 discriminatory markers (CK7, EMA), "type A" cases were similar to type 1. Although the high-nuclear grade areas of "type B" tumors showed some staining differences from their low-nuclear grade counterpart, their IHC profile was closer to type 1. Single nucleotide polymorphism array results, although preliminary and restricted to only 9 cases (3 with overlapping features), also seemed to confirm those findings. In conclusion, we demonstrate that variations in cytoplasmic quality and/or presence of high-grade nuclei in tumors otherwise displaying features of type 1 pRCCs are similar in stage and IHC profile those with classic type 1 histology, suggesting that their spectrum might be wider than originally described.

Related: Kidney Cancer
Departments of *Pathology †Human Genetics §Urology, McGill University ‡McGill University and Genome Quebec Innovation Centre ∥Pathologie et Biologie Cellulaire, Université de Montréal, QC, Canada.


Lemieux J, Provencher L, Laflamme C
Survey about the use of scalp cooling to prevent alopecia during breast cancer chemotherapy treatment in Canada.
Can Oncol Nurs J. 2014; 24(2):102-8 [PubMed] Related Publications
Alopecia is a side effect of chemotherapies used in breast cancer. Scalp cooling is a technique preventing alopecia, but its use remains controversial. We conducted a survey about knowledge of scalp cooling and interest in conducting a randomized clinical trial (RCT). An invitation was sent to 1,022 participants and a total of 139 individuals responded to the survey. The majority knew about the existence of scalp cooling. Ninety per cent thought that an RCT was needed and would participate. The survey revealed different potential problems associated with the increased chair time, limited space, and safety. We concluded that an RCT is needed and that the trial must include evaluation on the impact on health care system resources and safety.

Related: Cancer Treatments and Hair Loss Breast Cancer


Zhong T, Fernandes KA, Saskin R, et al.
Barriers to immediate breast reconstruction in the Canadian universal health care system.
J Clin Oncol. 2014; 32(20):2133-41 [PubMed] Related Publications
PURPOSE: To describe the population-based rates of immediate breast reconstruction (IBR) for all women undergoing mastectomy for treatment or prophylaxis of breast cancer in the past decade, and to evaluate geographic, institutional, and patient factors that influence use in the publically funded Canadian health care system.
METHODS: This population-based retrospective cohort study used administrative data that included 28,176 women who underwent mastectomy (25,141 mastectomy alone and 3,035 IBR) between April 1, 2002, and March 31, 2012, in Ontario, Canada. We evaluated factors associated with IBR by using a multivariable logistic regression model with the generalized estimating equation approach.
RESULTS: The population-based, age-adjusted IBR rate increased from 5.1 procedures to 8.7 in 100,000 adult women (43.7%; P < .001), and the increase was greatest for prophylactic mastectomy or therapeutic mastectomy for in situ breast cancer (78.6%; P < .001). Women who lived in neighborhoods with higher median income had significantly increased odds of IBR compared with mastectomy alone (odds ratio [OR], 1.71; 95% CI, 1.47 to 2.00), and immigrant women had significantly lower odds (OR, 0.59; 95% CI, 0.44 to 0.78). A patient had nearly twice the odds of receiving IBR when she was treated at a teaching hospital (OR, 1.84; 95% CI, 1.1 to 3.06) or at a hospital with two or more available plastic surgeons (OR, 2.01; 95% CI, 1.53 to 2.65). Patients who received IBR traveled significantly farther compared with those who received mastectomy alone (OR, 1.04; 95% CI, 1.02 to 1.05 for every 10 km increase).
CONCLUSION: IBR is available to select patients with favorable clinical and demographic characteristics who travel farther to undergo surgery at teaching hospitals with two or more available plastic surgeons.

Related: Breast Cancer
Toni Zhong, Christine B. Novak, David R. McCready, Stefan O.P. Hofer, and Jonathon C. Irish, University Health Network; Bret A. Beber, Women's College Hospital; Nancy N. Baxter, St Michael's Hospital; Toni Zhong, Jennica Platt, Brett A. Beber, Christine B. Novak, David R. McCready, Stefan O.P. Hofe...
Research funded by:


Hurdle V, Ouellet JF, Dixon E, et al.
Does regional variation impact decision-making in the management and palliation of pancreatic head adenocarcinoma? Results from an international survey.
Can J Surg. 2014; 57(3):E69-74 [PubMed] Free Access to Full Article Related Publications
BACKGROUND: Management and palliation of pancreatic head adenocarcinoma is challenging. End-of-life decision-making is a variable process involving multiple factors.
METHODS: We conducted a qualitative, physician-based, 40-question international survey characterizing the impact of medical, religious, social, training and system factors on care.
RESULTS: A total of 258 international clinicians completed the survey. Respondents were typically fellowship-trained (78%), with a mean of 16 years' experience in a university-affiliated (93%) hepato-pancreato-biliary group (96%) practice. Most (91%) believed resection is potentially curative. Most patients were discussed preoperatively by multidisciplinary teams (94%) and medical assessment clinics (68%), but rarely critical care (21%). Intraoperative surgical palliation included double bypass or no intervention for locally advanced nonresectable tumours (41% and 49% v. 14% and 85%, respectively, for patients with hepatic metastases). Postoperative admission to the intensive care unit was frequent (58%). Severe postoperative complications were often treated with aggressive cardiopulmonary resuscitation, intubation and critical care (96%), with no defined time points for futility (74%). Admitting surgeons guided most end-of-life decisions (97%). Formal medical futility laws were rarely available (26%). Insurance status did not alter treatment (97%) or palliation (95%) in non-universal care regions. Clinician experience, regional culture and training background impacted treatment (all p < 0.05).
CONCLUSION: Despite remarkable overall agreement, geographic and training differences are evident in the treatment and palliation of pancreatic head adenocarcinoma.

Related: Cancer of the Pancreas Pancreatic Cancer USA
The Department of Surgery, University of Calgary, Calgary, Alta.


Santibáñez P, Gaudet M, French J, et al.
Optimal location of radiation therapy centers with respect to geographic access.
Int J Radiat Oncol Biol Phys. 2014; 89(4):745-55 [PubMed] Related Publications
PURPOSE: To develop a framework with which to evaluate locations of radiation therapy (RT) centers in a region based on geographic access.
METHODS AND MATERIALS: Patient records were obtained for all external beam radiation therapy started in 2011 for the province of British Columbia, Canada. Two metrics of geographic access were defined. The primary analysis was percentage of patients (coverage) within a 90-minute drive from an RT center (C90), and the secondary analysis was the average drive time (ADT) to an RT center. An integer programming model was developed to determine optimal center locations, catchment areas, and capacity required under different scenarios.
RESULTS: Records consisted of 11,096 courses of radiation corresponding to 161,616 fractions. Baseline geographic access was estimated at 102.5 minutes ADT (each way, per fraction) and 75.9% C90. Adding 2 and 3 new centers increased C90 to 88% and 92%, respectively, and decreased ADT by between 43% and 61%, respectively. A scenario in which RT was provided in every potential location that could support at least 1 fully utilized linear accelerator resulted in 35.3 minutes' ADT and 93.6% C90.
CONCLUSIONS: The proposed framework and model provide a data-driven means to quantitatively evaluate alternative configurations of a regional RT system. Results suggest that the choice of location for future centers can significantly improve geographic access to RT.

Related: Cancer Prevention and Risk Reduction
Radiotherapy Department, Vancouver Centre, British Columbia Cancer Agency, Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada.
Research funded by:


Mesurolle B, Perez JC, Azzumea F, et al.
Atypical ductal hyperplasia diagnosed at sonographically guided core needle biopsy: frequency, final surgical outcome, and factors associated with underestimation.
AJR Am J Roentgenol. 2014; 202(6):1389-94 [PubMed] Related Publications
OBJECTIVE: The purposes of this article were to review the mammographic and sonographic features of breast masses yielding atypical ductal hyperplasia (ADH) at sonographically guided biopsy, evaluate the surgical pathology outcome of these lesions, and determine whether clinical or imaging features can be used to predict upgrade to malignancy.
MATERIALS AND METHODS: Among 6325 sonographically guided biopsies (2003- 2010) (14-gauge cores), 56 yielded the diagnosis of ADH (0.9%). Six patients were excluded (lost to follow-up). Fifty lesions were surgically excised in 45 patients. Mammographic and sonographic features were analyzed in consensus by two radiologists using the BI-RADS lexicon.
RESULTS: Forty-five patients (mean age, 56 years; 12 < 50 years; six with synchronous breast carcinoma) had 50 ADH lesions (median size, 0.6 cm). Surgical excision yielded malignancy in 28 cases (56% underestimation rate). Among 42 mammograms (47 lesions), 30 lesions were identified (30/47, 64%) as masses (12/30, 40%), asymmetric densities (10/30, 33%), microcalcifications (4/30, 13%), and architectural distortions (4/30, 13%). Sonographically, most lesions appeared as hypoechoic masses (64%, 30/47) with irregular shape (51%, 24/47), microlobulated margins (49%, 23/47), no posterior acoustic feature (25/47, 53%), abrupt interface (70%, 33/47), and parallel orientation (57%, 27/47). No mammographic and sonographic features were associated with malignant outcome, whereas age less than 50 years (p = 0.03) and synchronous malignancy (p = 0.03) were associated with malignant outcome.
CONCLUSION: ADH diagnosed at sonographically guided 14-gauge core needle biopsy shows a high underestimation rate. Synchronous carcinoma or age less than 50 years is associated with malignant outcome.

Related: Breast Cancer
1 All authors: Cedar Breast Clinic, McGill University Health Center, Royal Victoria Hospital, 687 Pine Ave W, Montreal, PQ, H3H 1A1 Canada.


Kennedy ED, Milot L, Fruitman M, et al.
Development and implementation of a synoptic MRI report for preoperative staging of rectal cancer on a population-based level.
Dis Colon Rectum. 2014; 57(6):700-8 [PubMed] Related Publications
BACKGROUND: Colorectal cancer physician champions across the province of Ontario, Canada, reported significant concern about appropriate selection of patients for preoperative chemoradiotherapy because of perceived variation in the completeness and consistency of MRI reports.
OBJECTIVE: The purpose of this work was to develop, pilot test, and implement a synoptic MRI report for preoperative staging of rectal cancer.
DESIGN: This was an integrated knowledge translation project.
SETTINGS: This study was conducted in Ontario, Canada.
PATIENTS: Surgeons, radiologists, radiation oncologists, medical oncologists, and pathologists treating patients with rectal cancer were included in this study.
INTERVENTIONS: A multifaceted knowledge translation strategy was used to develop, pilot test, and implement a synoptic MRI report. This strategy included physician champions, audit and feedback, assessment of barriers, and tailoring to the local context. A radiology webinar was conducted to pilot test the synoptic MRI report.
MAIN OUTCOME MEASURES: Seventy-three (66%) of 111 Ontario radiologists participated in the radiology webinar and evaluated the synoptic MRI report.
RESULTS: A total of 78% and 90% radiologists expressed that the synoptic MRI report was easy to use and included all of the appropriate items; 82% noted that the synoptic MRI report improved the overall quality of their information, and 83% indicated they would consider using this report in their clinical practice. An MRI report audit after implementation of the synoptic MRI report showed a 39% improvement in the completeness of MRI reports and a 37% uptake of the synoptic MRI report format across the province.
LIMITATIONS: Radiologists evaluating the synoptic MRI report and participating in the radiology webinar may not be representative of gastroenterologic radiologists in other geographic jurisdictions. The evaluation of completeness and uptake of the synoptic MRI reports is limited because of unmeasured differences that may occur before and after the MRI.
CONCLUSIONS: A synoptic MRI report for preoperative staging of rectal cancer was successfully developed and pilot tested in the province of Ontario, Canada.
1Department of Surgery, Mount Sinai Hospital, Toronto, Ontario, Canada 2Zane Cohen Centre for Digestive Diseases, Toronto, Ontario, Canada 3Department of Medicine, University of Toronto, Toronto, Ontario, Canada 4Institute of the Health Policy, Management and Evaluation, University of Toronto, Toro...


Robinson L, Miedema B, Easley J
Young adult cancer survivors and the challenges of intimacy.
J Psychosoc Oncol. 2014; 32(4):447-62 [PubMed] Related Publications
The purpose of this study was to explore intimate relationships after a cancer diagnosis, applying constructivist grounded theory to interviews with 55 Canadian young adult cancer survivors. The core category found was the dynamic interplay between participants' experiences of cancer and their intimate relationships. The authors found four themes within this core category: the mental experience of cancer, challenged sexual intimacy, the relationship response to strain (supportive or nonsupportive), and adapted intimacy. This research demonstrates the importance of intimate relationships for young adults along their cancer trajectory, revealing that those relationships are severely strained by a cancer diagnosis and treatment yet help to limit negative consequences.

Related: Cancer Prevention and Risk Reduction
a School of Health and Human Performance , Dalhousie University , Halifax , Nova Scotia , Canada.
Research funded by:


Baliski C, McGahan CE, Liberto CM, et al.
Influence of nurse navigation on wait times for breast cancer care in a Canadian regional cancer center.
Am J Surg. 2014; 207(5):686-91; discussion 691-2 [PubMed] Related Publications
BACKGROUND: The wait times for breast cancer care in our region do not meet acceptable benchmarks. We implemented the Interior Breast Rapid Access Investigation and Diagnosis (IB-RAPID) nurse navigation program to address this issue.
METHODS: The IB-RAPID prospective database was reviewed for patients entering the program between April 1, 2011 and April 30, 2012 (2011/2012 cohort), and was compared with patients from the same area in 2010. The main end point was the time between the 1st diagnostic imaging test and the surgery. Multiple linear regression was performed to investigate factors influencing the wait times.
RESULTS: The wait times decreased with the introduction of IB-RAPID (59 vs 48 days; median). Stage of disease, total number of biopsies, and magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) use influenced wait times. MRI significantly delayed surgical intervention in both groups with those not having an MRI having a shorter wait time to surgery (68.5 vs 57.6 days; mean) in 2011/2012.
CONCLUSION: The implementation of nurse navigation for patients with breast cancer appears to be effective at reducing the wait times for surgical treatment.

Related: Breast Cancer
BC Cancer Agency (BCCA SAH-CSI), Kelowna, BC, Canada; Surgical Oncology Network, BCCA, Vancouver, BC, Canada. Electronic address:


Edwards JP, Datta I, Hunt JD, et al.
A novel approach for the accurate prediction of thoracic surgery workforce requirements in Canada.
J Thorac Cardiovasc Surg. 2014; 148(1):7-12 [PubMed] Related Publications
OBJECTIVE: To develop a microsimulation model of thoracic surgery workforce supply and demand to forecast future labor requirements.
METHODS: The Canadian Community Health Survey and Canadian Census data were used to develop a microsimulation model. The demand component simulated the incidence of lung cancer; the supply component simulated the number of practicing thoracic surgeons. The full model predicted the rate of operable lung cancers per surgeon according to varying numbers of graduates per year.
RESULTS: From 2011 to 2030, the Canadian national population will increase by 10 million. The lung cancer incidence rates will increase until 2030, then plateau and decline. The rate will vary by region (12.5% in Western Canada, 37.2% in Eastern Canada) and will be less pronounced in major cities (10.3%). Minor fluctuations in the yearly thoracic surgery graduation rates (range, 4-8) will dramatically affect the future number of practicing surgeons (range, 116-215). The rate of operable lung cancer varies from 35.0 to 64.9 cases per surgeon annually. Training 8 surgeons annually would maintain the current rate of operable lung cancer cases per surgeon per year (range, 32-36). However, this increased rate of training will outpace the lung cancer incidence after 2030.
CONCLUSIONS: At the current rate of training, the incidence of operable lung cancer will increase until 2030 and then plateau and decline. The increase will outstrip the supply of thoracic surgeons, but the decline after 2030 will translate into an excess future supply. Minor increases in the rate of training in response to short-term needs could be problematic in the longer term. Unregulated workforce changes should, therefore, be approached with care.

Related: Lung Cancer
Division of General Surgery, Department of Surgery, University of Calgary Faculty of Medicine, Calgary, Alberta, Canada. Electronic address:


Xie F, Hopkins RB, Burke N, et al.
Time and labor costs associated with administration of intravenous bisphosphonates for breast or prostate cancer patients with metastatic bone disease: a time and motion study.
Hosp Pract (1995). 2014; 42(2):38-45 [PubMed] Related Publications
OBJECTIVES: To estimate, using a time and motion method, the time and labor costs associated with the administration of zoledronic acid and pamidronate in cancer patients with metastatic bone diseases.
METHODS: During clinic visits for participating patients receiving intravenous zoledronic acid or pamidronate, all times and activities associated with the administration of bisphosphonates were recorded by a trained observer using a stopwatch and data recording forms. The total time associated with the administration of bisphosphonates was estimated and converted to labor costs by applying corresponding health care professional hourly wage rates plus the fringe-benefit rate. The costs were presented in 2011 Canadian dollars.
RESULTS: A convenience sample of 37 patients from 2 hospital outpatient oncology clinics in Ontario and Quebec participated in the study. Nineteen patients were diagnosed with breast cancer and 18 with prostate cancer. The average patient age was 66 years, and patients had been diagnosed with cancer and metastatic bone disease for 8 years and 3 years, respectively. The times and costs associated with the administration of bisphosphonates for the 28 patients who did not receive concurrent chemotherapy during the scheduled clinic visits are also reported. The mean infusion time for patients receiving zoledronic acid was 20.6 minutes. With the use of ambulatory infusion devices, the mean infusion time of pamidronate was 23 minutes (limited to observations of patients who were seated during administration). In contrast, the mean infusion time using regular infusion devices was 162 minutes. The mean labor cost for administering zoledronic acid was $20. The mean labor cost for administering pamidronate was $10 using ambulatory infusion devices and $68 using regular infusion devices.
CONCLUSION: The time burden to cancer patients with metastatic bone disease who receive intravenous bisphosphonates and the costs to the health care system are substantial, especially when regular infusion devices are used.

Related: Breast Cancer Bisphosphonates Prostate Cancer Zoledronic acid (Zometa) Pamidronate (Aredia)
Department of Clinical Epidemiology and Biostatistics, Faculty of Health Sciences, McMaster University, Hamilton, Ontario, Canada; Program for Health Economics and Outcome Measures (PHENOM), Hamilton, Ontario, Canada.


Sritharan J, Kamaleswaran R, McFarlan K, et al.
Environmental factors in an Ontario community with disparities in colorectal cancer incidence.
Glob J Health Sci. 2014; 6(3):175-85 [PubMed] Related Publications
OBJECTIVE: In Ontario, there are significant geographical disparities in colorectal cancer incidence. In particular, the northern region of Timiskaming has the highest incidence of colorectal cancer in Ontario while the southern region of Peel displays the lowest. We aimed to identify non-nutritional modifiable environmental factors in Timiskaming that may be associated with its diverging colorectal cancer incidence rates when compared to Peel.
METHODS: We performed a systematic review to identify established and proposed environmental factors associated with colorectal cancer incidence, created an assessment questionnaire tool regarding these environmental exposures, and applied this questionnaire among 114 participants from the communities of Timiskaming and Peel.
RESULTS: We found that tobacco smoking, alcohol consumption, residential use of organochlorine pesticides, and potential exposure to toxic metals were dominant factors among Timiskaming respondents. We found significant differences regarding active smoking, chronic alcohol use, reported indoor and outdoor household pesticide use, and gold and silver mining in the Timiskaming region.
CONCLUSIONS: This study, the first to assess environmental factors in the Timiskaming community, identified higher reported exposures to tobacco, alcohol, pesticides, and mining in Timiskaming when compared with Peel. These significant findings highlight the need for specific public health assessments and interventions regarding community environmental exposures.

Related: Colorectal (Bowel) Cancer
University of Ontario Institute of Technology.


Fleming KE, Ly TY, Pasternak S, et al.
Support for p63 expression as an adverse prognostic marker in Merkel cell carcinoma: report on a Canadian cohort.
Hum Pathol. 2014; 45(5):952-60 [PubMed] Related Publications
Recent evidence has invoked immunohistochemical expression of p63 in Merkel cell carcinoma as an adverse prognostic factor. Conflicting data led us to evaluate this. An Eastern Canadian cohort diagnosed between 1990 and 2012 was studied. Demographic and clinical data were obtained from pathology records and Provincial Cancer Registries. Pathological features were evaluated by the investigators. Merkel cell polyomavirus status was known in a subset of cases. Clinicopathological features were correlated with overall survival. The cohort consisted of 83 patients (mean age, 75.8 ± 11.7 years) with a male/female ratio of 1.24:1. In a mean follow-up period of 175 weeks (±177), 51 patients died (61.4%). Of several parameters examined, 6 showed significant adverse associations with survival on univariate analysis: age (hazard ratio [HR], 1.05 [1.02-1.08]), clinical stage (III/IV versus I/II; HR, 2.24 [1.18-4.27]), tumor size (HR, 1.16 [1.05-1.28]), combined versus pure morphology (HR, 1.82 [1.04-3.18]), minimal tumor-infiltrating lymphocytes (HR, 2.23 [1.04-4.78]), and expression of p63 (positive in 49.4%; HR, 1.93 [1.09-3.43]). In the stage I/II subgroup, p63 expression was associated with a trend toward poor survival. On multivariate analysis, p63 expression was not significantly associated with reduced survival. Our data support existing evidence that p63 expression in Merkel cell carcinoma carries adverse implications for survival. That it was not an independent prognostic factor may be due to study size and/or its potential as a confounding variable with clinical stage. Of clinical importance is its association with a trend toward a poor outcome in early stage disease.

Related: Merkel Cell Carcinoma Skin Cancer
Department of Pathology, Queen Elizabeth II Health Sciences Center, Capital District Health Authority, Halifax, NS, Canada B3H 1V8; Dalhousie University, Halifax, NS, Canada B3H 1V8.


Aplenc R, Zhang MJ, Sung L, et al.
Effect of body mass in children with hematologic malignancies undergoing allogeneic bone marrow transplantation.
Blood. 2014; 123(22):3504-11 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 29/05/2015 Related Publications
The rising incidence of pediatric obesity may significantly affect bone marrow transplantation (BMT) outcomes. We analyzed outcomes in 3687 children worldwide who received cyclophosphamide-based BMT regimens for leukemias between 1990 and 2007. Recipients were classified according to age-adjusted body mass index (BMI) percentiles as underweight (UW), at risk of UW (RUW), normal, overweight (OW), or obese (OB). Median age and race were similar in all groups. Sixty-one percent of OB children were from the United States/Canada. Three-year relapse-free and overall survival ranged from 48% to 52% (P = .54) and 55% to 58% (P = .81) across BMI groups. Three-year leukemia relapses were 33%, 33%, 29%, 25%, and 21% in the UW, RUW, normal, OW, and OB groups, respectively (P < .001). Corresponding cumulative incidences for transplant-related mortality (TRM) were 18%, 19%, 21%, 22%, and 28% (P < .01). Multivariate analysis demonstrated a decreased risk of relapse compared with normal BMI (relative risk [RR] = 0.73; P < .01) and a trend toward higher TRM (RR = 1.28; P = .014). BMI in children is not significantly associated with different survival after BMT for hematologic malignancies. Obese children experience less relapse posttransplant compared with children with normal BMI; however, this benefit is offset by excess in TRM.

Related: Haematological Malignancies & Realted Disorders USA
Children's Hospital of Philadelphia, Philadelphia, PA;
Research funded by:


Henderson SB, Rauch SA, Hystad P, Kosatsky T
Differences in lung cancer mortality trends from 1986-2012 by radon risk areas in British Columbia, Canada.
Health Phys. 2014; 106(5):608-13 [PubMed] Related Publications
Residential exposure to radon gas is associated with increased risk of lung cancer, especially in smokers. Most evidence about the health effects of radon has been derived from meta-analyses on global epidemiologic studies, but administrative data can help public health authorities to explore the local impacts. Eighty health units in British Columbia (BC), Canada, were classified as having low, moderate, or high radon risk using more than 3,800 residential measurements. Vital statistics records were used to identify deaths due to lung cancer and to all natural causes. The annual ratio of lung cancer mortality to all natural mortality was plotted for the 1986-2012 study period for each radon classification. Visualizations were stratified by gender and by smoking prevalence. The overall ratio increased throughout the study period in high radon areas and remained stable in low and moderate radon areas. The increase was most pronounced for females, especially when plots were stratified by smoking prevalence. These limited but interesting findings confirm that radon is one risk factor for lung cancer mortality in BC and that its effects differ across gender and smoking strata. The results would be strengthened by replication, and more rigorous methods are required to assess other contributing factors.

Related: Lung Cancer
*Environmental Health Services, British Columbia Centre for Disease Control, 655 West 12th Avenue, Vancouver, BC V5Z 4R4, Canada; †School of Population and Public Health, The University of British Columbia, 2206 East Mall, Vancouver, BC V5T 1Z3, Canada.


Gillis A, Dixon M, Smith A, et al.
A patient-centred approach toward surgical wait times for colon cancer: a population-based analysis.
Can J Surg. 2014; 57(2):94-100 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 29/05/2015 Related Publications
BACKGROUND: Administrative wait times reflect the time from the decision to treat until surgery; however, this does not reflect the total time a patient actually waits for treatment. Several factors may prolong the wait for colon cancer surgery. We sought to analyze the time from the date of surgical consultation to the date of surgery and any events within this time frame that may extend wait times.
METHODS: We retrospectively reviewed the cases of all adult patients in Ontario aged 18-80 years with diagnosed colon cancer who did not receive neoadjuvant therapy and underwent resection electively between Jan. 1, 2002, and Dec. 31, 2009. Wait times were measured from the date of surgical consultation to the date of surgery. We chose a wait time of 28 days, reflecting local administrative targets, as a comparative benchmark. We performed univariate and multivariate analyses to identify variables contributing to a waits longer than 28 days. Variables were analyzed in continuous linear and logistic regression models.
RESULTS: We included 10 223 patients in our study. The median wait time from initial surgical consultation to resection was 31 (range 0-182) days. Age older than 65 years had a negative impact on wait time. Preoperative services, including computed tomography, cardiac consultation, echocardiography, multigated acquisition scan, magnetic resonance imaging, colonoscopy and cardiac catheterization also significantly increased wait times. Wait times were longer in rural hospitals.
CONCLUSION: Preoperative services significantly increased wait times between initial surgical consultation and surgery.
The Department of Surgery, Trinity College School of Medicine, Dublin, Ireland.


Lo AC, Howard AF, Nichol A, et al.
Long-term outcomes and complications in patients with craniopharyngioma: the British Columbia Cancer Agency experience.
Int J Radiat Oncol Biol Phys. 2014; 88(5):1011-8 [PubMed] Related Publications
PURPOSE: We report long-term outcomes and complications of craniopharyngioma patients referred to our institution.
METHODS AND MATERIALS: Between 1971 and 2010, 123 consecutive patients received primary treatment for craniopharyngioma in British Columbia and were referred to our institution. The median age was 30 years (range, 2-80 years). Thirty-nine percent of patients were treated primarily with subtotal resection (STR) and radiation therapy (RT), 28% with STR alone, 15% with gross total resection, 11% with cyst drainage (CD) alone, 5% with CD+RT, and 2% with RT alone. Eight percent of patients received intracystic bleomycin (ICB) therapy.
RESULTS: Median follow-up was 8.9 years, and study endpoints were reported at 10 years. Ten-year Kaplan-Meier progression-free survival (PFS) was 46%. Patients treated with STR+RT or CD+RT had the highest PFS (82% and 83%, respectively). There were no significant differences between PFS after adjuvant versus salvage RT (84% vs 74%, respectively; P=.6). Disease-specific survival (DSS) was 88%, and overall survival (OS) was 80%. Primary treatment modality did not affect DSS or OS, while older age was a negative prognostic factor for OS but not DSS. Kaplan-Meier rates for visual deterioration, anterior pituitary hormone deficiency, diabetes insipidus, seizure disorder, and cerebrovascular events (CVE) due to treatment, not tumor progression, were 27%, 76%, 45%, 16%, and 11%, respectively. The CVE rate was 29% in patients who received ICB compared to 10% in those who did not (P=.07).
CONCLUSIONS: We report favorable PFS in patients with craniopharyngioma, especially in those who received RT after surgery. DSS and OS rates were excellent regardless of primary treatment modality. We observed a high incidence of hypopituitarism, visual deterioration, and seizure disorder. Eleven percent of patients experienced CVEs after treatment. There was a suggestion of increased CVE risk in patients treated with ICB.

Related: Bleomycin Childhood Craniopharyngioma Pituitary Tumors
Department of Radiation Oncology, British Columbia Cancer Agency Vancouver Centre, Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada; Department of Surgery, University of British Columbia, Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada. Electronic address:


Ferro A, Peleteiro B, Malvezzi M, et al.
Worldwide trends in gastric cancer mortality (1980-2011), with predictions to 2015, and incidence by subtype.
Eur J Cancer. 2014; 50(7):1330-44 [PubMed] Related Publications
Gastric cancer incidence and mortality decreased substantially over the last decades in most countries worldwide, with differences in the trends and distribution of the main topographies across regions. To monitor recent mortality trends (1980-2011) and to compute short-term predictions (2015) of gastric cancer mortality in selected countries worldwide, we analysed mortality data provided by the World Health Organization. We also analysed incidence of cardia and non-cardia cancers using data from Cancer Incidence in Five Continents (2003-2007). The joinpoint regression over the most recent calendar periods gave estimated annual percent changes (EAPC) around -3% for the European Union (EU) and major European countries, as well as in Japan and Korea, and around -2% in North America and major Latin American countries. In the United States of America (USA), EU and other major countries worldwide, the EAPC, however, were lower than in previous years. The predictions for 2015 show that a levelling off of rates is expected in the USA and a few other countries. The relative contribution of cardia and non-cardia gastric cancers to the overall number of cases varies widely, with a generally higher proportion of cardia cancers in countries with lower gastric cancer incidence and mortality rates (e.g. the USA, Canada and Denmark). Despite the favourable mortality trends worldwide, in some countries the declines are becoming less marked. There still is the need to control Helicobacter pylori infection and other risk factors, as well as to improve diagnosis and management, to further reduce the burden of gastric cancer.

Related: Australia Stomach Cancer Gastric Cancer USA
Institute of Public Health of the University of Porto (ISPUP), Rua das Taipas n° 135, 4050-600 Porto, Portugal.


Goss PE, Hershman DL, Cheung AM, et al.
Effects of adjuvant exemestane versus anastrozole on bone mineral density for women with early breast cancer (MA.27B): a companion analysis of a randomised controlled trial.
Lancet Oncol. 2014; 15(4):474-82 [PubMed] Related Publications
BACKGROUND: Treatment of breast cancer with aromatase inhibitors is associated with damage to bones. NCIC CTG MA.27 was an open-label, phase 3, randomised controlled trial in which women with breast cancer were assigned to one of two adjuvant oral aromatase inhibitors-exemestane or anastrozole. We postulated that exemestane-a mildly androgenic steroid-might have a less detrimental effect on bone than non-steroidal anastrozole. In this companion study to MA.27, we compared changes in bone mineral density (BMD) in the lumbar spine and total hip between patients treated with exemestane and patients treated with anastrozole.
METHODS: In MA.27, postmenopausal women with early stage hormone (oestrogen) receptor-positive invasive breast cancer were randomly assigned to exemestane 25 mg versus anastrozole 1 mg, daily. MA.27B recruited two groups of women from MA.27: those with BMD T-scores of -2·0 or more (up to 2 SDs below sex-matched, young adult mean) and those with at least one T-score (hip or spine) less than -2·0. Both groups received vitamin D and calcium; those with baseline T-scores of less than -2·0 also received bisphosphonates. The primary endpoints were percent change of BMD at 2 years in lumbar spine and total hip for both groups. We analysed patients according to which aromatase inhibitor and T-score groups they were allocated to but BMD assessments ceased if patients deviated from protocol. This study is registered with ClinicalTrials.gov, NCT00354302.
FINDINGS: Between April 24, 2006, and May 30, 2008, 300 patients with baseline T-scores of -2·0 or more were accrued (147 allocated exemestane, 153 anastrozole); and 197 patients with baseline T-scores of less than -2·0 (101 exemestane, 96 anastrozole). For patients with T-scores greater than -2·0 at baseline, mean change of bone mineral density in the spine at 2 years did not differ significantly between patients taking exemestane and patients taking anastrozole (-0·92%, 95% CI -2·35 to 0·50 vs -2·39%, 95% CI -3·77 to -1·01; p=0·08). Respective mean loss in the hip was -1·93% (95% CI -2·93 to -0·93) versus -2·71% (95% CI -4·32 to -1·11; p=0·10). Likewise for those who started with T-scores of less than -2·0, mean change of spine bone mineral density at 2 years did not differ significantly between the exemestane and anastrozole treatment groups (2·11%, 95% CI -0·84 to 5·06 vs 3·72%, 95% CI 1·54 to 5·89; p=0·26), nor did hip bone mineral density (2·09%, 95% CI -1·45 to 5·63 vs 0·0%, 95% CI -3·67 to 3·66; p=0·28). Patients with baseline T-score of -2·0 or more taking exemestane had two fragility fractures and two other fractures, those taking anastrozole had three fragility fractures and five other fractures. For patients who had baseline T-scores of less than -2·0 taking exemestane, one had a fragility fracture and four had other fractures, whereas those taking anastrozole had five fragility fractures and one other fracture.
INTERPRETATION: Our results demonstrate that adjuvant treatment with aromatase inhibitors can be considered for breast cancer patients who have T-scores less than -2·0.
FUNDING: Canadian Cancer Society Research Institute, Pfizer, Canadian Institutes of Health Research.

Related: Breast Cancer Bisphosphonates USA
Massachusetts General Hospital, Boston, MA, USA. Electronic address:
Research funded by:


Jaraway D, Perry S, Phillips M, et al.
Preparing parents to help support their child post-amputation for bone cancer.
ORNAC J. 2013; 31(4):13-9, 24-5 [PubMed] Related Publications
Amputation for paediatric bone cancer is cosmetically and emotionally disturbing. At the Stollery Children's Hospital, in Edmonton, Alberta, families are taken to see their child following amputation but before their child's anaesthetic has been reversed. Through a retrospective study we found that families found this step to be valuable in helping them prepare to support and care for their child post-amputation.

Related: Bone Cancers


Bélanger M, Poirier M, Jbilou J, Scarborough P
Modelling the impact of compliance with dietary recommendations on cancer and cardiovascular disease mortality in Canada.
Public Health. 2014; 128(3):222-30 [PubMed] Related Publications
OBJECTIVES: Despite strong evidence indicating that unbalanced diets relate to chronic diseases and mortality, most adults do not comply with dietary recommendations. To help determine which recommendations could yield the most benefits, the number of deaths attributable to cardiovascular diseases and cancer that could be delayed or averted in Canada if adults changed their diet to adhere to recommendations were estimated.
STUDY DESIGN: Macrosimulation based on national population-based survey and vital statistics data.
METHODS: A macrosimulation model was used to draw age- and sex-specific changes in relative risks based on the results of meta-analyses of relationship between food components and risk of cardiovascular disease and diet-related cancers. Inputs in the model included Canadian recommendations (fruit and vegetable, fibre, salt, and total-, monounsaturated-, polyunsaturated-, saturated-, and trans-fats), average dietary intake (from 35,107 participants with 24-h recall), and mortality from specific causes (from Canadian Vital Statistics). Monte Carlo analyses were used to compute 95% credible intervals (CI).
RESULTS: The estimates of this study suggest that 30,540 deaths (95% CI: 24,953, 34,989) per year could be averted or delayed if Canadians adhered to their dietary recommendations. By itself, the recommendation for fruit and vegetable intake could save as many as 72% (55-87%) of these deaths. It is followed by recommendations for fibres (29%, 13-43%) and salt (10%, 9-12%).
CONCLUSIONS: A considerable number of lives could be saved if Canadians adhered to the national dietary intake recommendations. Given the scarce resources available to promote guideline adhesion, priority should be given to recommendations for fruit and vegetable intake.

Related: Cancer Prevention and Risk Reduction
Department of Family Medicine, Université de Sherbrooke, Sherbrooke, Canada; Vitalité Health Network Research Centre, Moncton, Canada; Centre de formation médicale du Nouveau-Brunswick, Moncton, Canada. Electronic address:
Research funded by:


Chan EK, Woods R, McBride ML, et al.
Adjuvant hypofractionated versus conventional whole breast radiation therapy for early-stage breast cancer: long-term hospital-related morbidity from cardiac causes.
Int J Radiat Oncol Biol Phys. 2014; 88(4):786-92 [PubMed] Related Publications
PURPOSE: The risk of cardiac injury with hypofractionated whole-breast/chest wall radiation therapy (HF-WBI) compared with conventional whole-breast/chest wall radiation therapy (CF-WBI) in women with left-sided breast cancer remains a concern. The purpose of this study was to determine if there is an increase in hospital-related morbidity from cardiac causes with HF-WBI relative to CF-WBI.
METHODS AND MATERIALS: Between 1990 and 1998, 5334 women ≤ 80 years of age with early-stage breast cancer were treated with postoperative radiation therapy to the breast or chest wall alone. A population-based database recorded baseline patient, tumor, and treatment factors. Hospital administrative records identified baseline cardiac risk factors and other comorbidities. Factors between radiation therapy groups were balanced using a propensity-score model. The first event of a hospital admission for cardiac causes after radiation therapy was determined from hospitalization records. Ten- and 15-year cumulative hospital-related cardiac morbidity after radiation therapy was estimated for left- and right-sided cases using a competing risk approach.
RESULTS: The median follow-up was 13.2 years. For left-sided cases, 485 women were treated with CF-WBI, and 2221 women were treated with HF-WBI. Mastectomy was more common in the HF-WBI group, whereas boost was more common in the CF-WBI group. The CF-WBI group had a higher prevalence of diabetes. The 15-year cumulative hospital-related morbidity from cardiac causes (95% confidence interval) was not different between the 2 radiation therapy regimens after propensity-score adjustment: 21% (19-22) with HF-WBI and 21% (17-25) with CF-WBI (P=.93). For right-sided cases, the 15-year cumulative hospital-related morbidity from cardiac causes was also similar between the radiation therapy groups (P=.76).
CONCLUSIONS: There is no difference in morbidity leading to hospitalization from cardiac causes among women with left-sided early-stage breast cancer treated with HF-WBI or CF-WBI at 15-year follow-up.

Related: Breast Cancer
Department of Oncology, Saint John Regional Hospital, Saint John, Canada.


Kredentser MS, Martens PJ, Chochinov HM, Prior HJ
Cause and rate of death in people with schizophrenia across the lifespan: a population-based study in Manitoba, Canada.
J Clin Psychiatry. 2014; 75(2):154-61 [PubMed] Related Publications
OBJECTIVE: To compare the causes and rates of death for people with and without schizophrenia in Manitoba, Canada.
METHOD: Using de-identified administrative databases at the Manitoba Centre for Health Policy, a population-based analysis was performed to compare age- and sex-adjusted 10-year (1999-2008) mortality rates, overall and by specific cause, of decedents aged 10 years or older who had 1 diagnosis of schizophrenia (ICD-9-CM code 295, ICD-10-CA codes F20, F21, F23.2, F25) over a 12-year period (N = 9,038) to the rest of the population (N = 969,090).
RESULTS: The mortality rate for those with schizophrenia was double that of the rest of the population (20.00% vs. 9.37%). The all-cause mortality rate was higher for people with schizophrenia compared to all others (168.9 vs. 99.1 per thousand; relative risk [RR] = 1.70, P < .0001); rates of death due to suicide (RR = 8.67, P < .0001), injury (RR = 2.35, P < .0001), respiratory illness (RR = 2.00, P < .0001), and circulatory illness (RR = 1.64, P < .0001) were also significantly higher in people with schizophrenia. Overall cancer deaths were similar (28.6 vs. 27.3 per thousand, P = .42, NS) except in the middle-aged group (40-59), in which cancer death rates were significantly higher for those with schizophrenia (28.7 vs. 11.6 per thousand; RR = 2.48, P < .01). Mortality rates due to lung cancer were significantly higher in people with schizophrenia (9.4 vs. 6.4 per thousand, RR = 1.45, P < .001).
CONCLUSIONS: People with schizophrenia are at increased risk of death compared to the general population, and the majority of these deaths are occurring in older age from physical disease processes. Risk of cancer mortality is significantly higher in middle-aged but not younger or older patients with schizophrenia. Understanding these patients' vulnerabilities to physical illness has important public health implications for prevention, screening, and treatment as the population ages.

Related: Cancer Prevention and Risk Reduction Children's Cancer Web: Home Page
Manitoba Palliative Care Research Unit, 3017-675 McDermot Ave, Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada R3E 0V9
Research funded by:


Théberge I, Chang SL, Vandal N, et al.
Radiologist interpretive volume and breast cancer screening accuracy in a Canadian organized screening program.
J Natl Cancer Inst. 2014; 106(3):djt461 [PubMed] Related Publications
BACKGROUND: To strengthen evidence on which radiologist mammography interpretive volume requirements can be based, we assessed the relation of volume to accuracy in the Quebec Breast Cancer Screening Program.
METHODS: Annual interpretive volume (total, screening, and diagnostic) for all 340 radiologists who interpreted 1315327 screening examinations in the period from 2000 to 2006 was obtained using provincial databases. The association of volume to sensitivity, false-positive rate, and accuracy (sensitivity/false-positive rate) was assessed by multivariable Poisson regression with robust error variance. All statistical tests were two-sided.
RESULTS: Radiologists consistently interpreting less than 500 mammograms annually experienced a 58% reduction in accuracy (adjusted accuracy ratio = 0.42; 95% confidence interval [CI] = 0.24 to 0.74) compared with those who consistently interpreted at least 500 mammograms annually. Moreover, accuracy increased progressively as total annual volume increased (P trend = .0005). Radiologists interpreting at least 4000 mammograms annually experienced a 32% increase in accuracy (adjusted accuracy ratio = 1.32; 95% CI = 1.13 to 1.54) compared with those interpreting 500 to 999 mammograms annually. This increase in accuracy is attributable to a reduction in false-positive rate as total volume increased (P trend = .001). Sensitivity changed little with total volume (P trend = .68). Gains in accuracy were greater up to approximately 3000 mammograms interpreted annually.
CONCLUSIONS: The minimum annual volume of 500 mammograms required in North America is justified; radiologist accuracy may be compromised if interpretive volume is consistently less than this requirement. Raising interpretive volume may help to reduce the frequency of false positives without loss of sensitivity. Possible gains in accuracy may be greater with increases in volume of up to approximately 3000 mammograms interpreted annually.

Related: Breast Cancer Breast Cancer Screening Cancer Screening and Early Detection
Affiliation of authors: Direction de l'analyse et de l'évaluation des systèmes de soins et services, Institut national de santé publique du Québec, Québec City, Canada (IT, SLC, NV, JMD, MHG, EP, JB); Unité de Recherche en Santé des Populations (URESP), Centre de ...


Vicus D, Sutradhar R, Lu Y, et al.
The association between cervical cancer screening and mortality from cervical cancer: a population based case-control study.
Gynecol Oncol. 2014; 133(2):167-71 [PubMed] Related Publications
OBJECTIVE: To estimate the effect of cervical cancer screening on mortality from cervical cancer in women between the ages of 20 and 69 residing in Ontario by 5 year age groups.
METHODS: An Ontario population based case-control study of women between ages 20 and 69 was performed. Cases were women who were diagnosed with cervical cancer between January 1, 1998 and December 31, 2008 who died from cervical cancer within this period. Controls were women without a diagnosis of cervical cancer between January 1, 1998 and December 31, 2008 who were alive on the case's date of death. Exposure was defined as cervical cytology history. Conditional logistic regression was used to estimate the strength of association between mortality from cervical cancer and screening in 5 year incremental age intervals.
RESULTS: We identified 1052 cases and 10,494 controls. Less than 2.5% of women who died from cervical cancer were under the age of 30. Cervical cancer screening performed 3-36 months prior to the date of diagnosis was found to be protective of mortality from cervical cancer in women over the age of 30 (odds ratio=0.28-0.60; p<0.05 in all strata). In women under the age of 30 cervical cancer screening was not found to be protective of mortality from cervical cancer (odds ratio=1.58-2.43; non significant).
CONCLUSION: No association between cervical cancer screening and mortality from cervical cancer under the age of 30 was found. This could be due to there being a small or having no effect or due to the fact that mortality from cervical cancer under the age of 30 is extremely rare.

Related: Cancer Screening and Early Detection Cervical Cancer Cervical Cancer Screening
Division of Gynecologic Oncology, Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre, Toronto, Ontario, Canada; Institue of Clinical Evaluative Sciences, Toronto, Ontario, Canada. Electronic address:


Zablotska LB, Lane RS, Frost SE, Thompson PA
Leukemia, lymphoma and multiple myeloma mortality (1950-1999) and incidence (1969-1999) in the Eldorado uranium workers cohort.
Environ Res. 2014; 130:43-50 [PubMed] Article available free on PMC after 01/04/2015 Related Publications
Uranium workers are chronically exposed to low levels of radon decay products (RDP) and gamma (γ) radiation. Risks of leukemia from acute and high doses of γ-radiation are well-characterized, but risks from lower doses and dose-rates and from RDP exposures are controversial. Few studies have evaluated risks of other hematologic cancers in uranium workers. The purpose of this study was to analyze radiation-related risks of hematologic cancers in the cohort of Eldorado uranium miners and processors first employed in 1932-1980 in relation to cumulative RDP exposures and γ-ray doses. The average cumulative RDP exposure was 100.2 working level months and the average cumulative whole-body γ-radiation dose was 52.2 millisievert. We identified 101 deaths and 160 cases of hematologic cancers in the cohort. Overall, male workers had lower mortality and cancer incidence rates for all outcomes compared with the general Canadian male population, a likely healthy worker effect. No statistically significant association between RDP exposure or γ-ray doses, or a combination of both, and mortality or incidence of any hematologic cancer was found. We observed consistent but non-statistically significant increases in risks of chronic lymphocytic leukemia (CLL) and Hodgkin lymphoma (HL) incidence and non-Hodgkin lymphoma (NHL) mortality with increasing γ-ray doses. These findings are consistent with recent studies of increased risks of CLL and NHL incidence after γ-radiation exposure. Further research is necessary to understand risks of other hematologic cancers from low-dose exposures to γ-radiation.

Related: Leukemia Non Hodgkin's Lymphoma Myeloma Myeloma - Molecular Biology
Department of Epidemiology and Biostatistics, School of Medicine, University of California, San Francisco, CA 94118, USA. Electronic address:
Research funded by:


Larkin J, Del Vecchio M, Ascierto PA, et al.
Vemurafenib in patients with BRAF(V600) mutated metastatic melanoma: an open-label, multicentre, safety study.
Lancet Oncol. 2014; 15(4):436-44 [PubMed] Related Publications
BACKGROUND: The orally available BRAF kinase inhibitor vemurafenib, compared with dacarbazine, shows improved response rates, progression-free survival (PFS), and overall survival in patients with metastatic melanoma that has a BRAF(V600) mutation. We assessed vemurafenib in patients with advanced metastatic melanoma with BRAF(V600) mutations who had few treatment options.
METHODS: In an open-label, multicentre study, patients with untreated or previously treated melanoma and a BRAF(V600) mutation received oral vemurafenib 960 mg twice a day. The primary endpoint was safety. All analyses were done on the safety population, which included all patients who received at least one dose of vemurafenib. This report is the third interim analysis of this study. This study is registered with ClinicalTrials.gov, number NCT01307397.
FINDINGS: Between March 1, 2011, and Jan 31, 2013, 3226 patients were enrolled in 44 countries. 3222 patients received at least one dose of vemurafenib (safety population). At data cutoff, 868 (27%) patients were on study treatment and 2354 (73%) had withdrawn, mainly because of disease progression. Common adverse events of all grades included rash (1592 [49%]), arthralgia (1259 [39%]), fatigue (1093 [34%]), photosensitivity reaction (994 [31%]), alopecia (826 [26%]), and nausea (628 [19%]). 1480 (46%) patients reported grade 3 or 4 adverse events, including cutaneous squamous cell carcinoma (389 [12%]), rash (155 [5%]), liver function abnormalities (165 [5%]), arthralgia (106 [3%]), and fatigue (93 [3%]). Grade 3 and 4 adverse events were reported more frequently in patients aged 75 years and older (n=257; 152 [59%, 95% CI 53-65] and ten [4%, 2-7], respectively) than in those younger than 75 years (n=2965; 1286 [43%, 42-45] and 82 [3%, 2-3], respectively).
INTERPRETATION: Vemurafenib safety in this diverse population of patients with BRAF(V600) mutated metastatic melanoma, who are more representative of routine clinical practice, was consistent with the safety profile shown in the pivotal trials of this drug.
FUNDING: F Hoffmann-La Roche.

Related: Australia BRAF gene Skin Cancer Vemurafenib (Zelboraf)
Royal Marsden Hospital NHS Foundation Trust, London, UK. Electronic address:


Stephen J, Collie K, McLeod D, et al.
Talking with text: communication in therapist-led, live chat cancer support groups.
Soc Sci Med. 2014; 104:178-86 [PubMed] Related Publications
CancerChatCanada is a pan-Canadian initiative with a mandate to make professionally led cancer support groups available to more people in Canada. Although online support groups are becoming increasingly popular, little is known about therapist-led, synchronous groups using live chat. The purpose of this study was to generate a rich descriptive account of communication experiences in CancerChatCanada groups and to gain an understanding of processes associated with previously-reported benefits. We used interpretive description to analyze interview segments from 102 patients, survivors and family caregivers who participated in CancerChatCanada groups between 2007 and 2011. The analysis yielded four inter-related process themes (Reaching Out From Home, Feeling Safe, Emotional Release, and Talking With Text) and one outcome theme (Resonance and Kinship). The findings extend previous research about text-only online support groups and provide novel insights into features of facilitated, live chat communication that are valued by group members.

Related: Cancer Prevention and Risk Reduction
BC Cancer Agency, Patient and Family Counselling Services, 13750 96th Ave, Surrey, BC V3T 0C7, Canada. Electronic address:
Research funded by:


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