Blackwell Publishing Journal Backfiles 1879-2005
Background: Although the pattern of cancer incidence in South Korea is not the same as that of western countries, urological cancer will become one of the major cancers in South Korea in the near future. The pattern of cancer in South Korea is becoming steadily similar to that in western countries. It is, therefore, important to understand the epidemiological features of cancer. Surveillance of cancer incidence and mortality trends provides clues to etiology and helps to assess the effects of improved diagnostic, screening and intervention measures.Methods: The subjects of the study were 13 208 patients living in South Korea, newly diagnosed with urological cancer during the period of 1985–1999. The data were analyzed by age, sex, geography and period of diagnosis (1985–1989; 1990–1994; 1995–1999).Results: Bladder cancer was the most common urological cancer in South Korea (6867 cases, 52.0%). The incidence of prostate cancer and renal cell carcinoma was similar. Male patients outnumbered female patients by a ratio of 5.4 : 1. In both sexes, the peak incidence of urological cancer in South Korea was noted in the 70+ age group. The geographic distribution of urological cancer across seven residential areas was similar. The incidence rate of all urological cancer (except urethral and penile cancer) had increased remarkably, especially in the last several years. The crude incidence rate of urological cancer among Koreans in South Korea was estimated to be 46.55 per 100 000 males, 8.64per 100 000 females and 27.67 per 100 000 across both sexes.Conclusion: Although this survey is not definitive, these data should be useful in showing general patterns or changes of incidence of urological cancer in South Korea. The elevated incidence of urological cancer noted in our survey also indicates the need for continued promotion of urological cancer screening programs. Moreover, these results may be useful in indicating directions for future research of urological cancer.
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