Trends in Brain Cancer Incidence and Survival in the United States: Surveillance, Epidemiology, and End Results Program, 1973 to 2001.

Sundeep Deorah, M.A.; Charles F. Lynch, M.D., Ph.D.; Zita A. Sibenaller, Ph.D.; Timothy C. Ryken, M.D.


Neurosurg Focus. 2006;20(4):E3 

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People in population subgroups at higher risk for brain cancer are the elderly, Caucasians, men, and those living in metropolitan counties. Despite raised concerns related to the risk of brain cancer from using cellular phones, our study fails to find support for this hypothesis at the population level. After 1987, the incidence of brain cancer in the US decreased at the rate of 0.44% per year. The cause for this decline is unclear because of the paucity of definitive knowledge on the risk factors of brain cancer, but solace can be taken from the fact that brain cancers are not rising in this era of increasing environmental toxic exposures. However, the rising trend of GBM, combined with poor survival rates for people with GBM, is disconcerting and needs further exploration. Despite their limitations, high-quality registry data continue to be an important source of incidence and survival information about these rare tumors. Efforts should be made to link registry data to individual patient information, such as demographics, occupation, social class, and clinical and treatment data to help researchers study etiologic risk factors and determine the effect of therapeutic advances on patient survival.


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