New Cancer Impact Data From North Africa

Lidia SACCHETTO, CPO, Centre for Cancer Prevention, Italy
ROSSO S. 1 , BENIDER A. 2,3 , TAZI M. 4 , BENJAAFAR N. 4 , ZANETTI R. 1

1 Piedmont Cancer Registry, CPO Centre for Cancer Prevention, Turin, Italy
2 Grand Casablanca Cancer Registry, Centre Mohammed VI, CHU Ibn-Rochd, Casablanca, Morocco
3 Lalla Salma Foundation, Rabat, Morocco
4 Rabat Cancer Registry, INO-MhO, Rabat, Morocco

Purpose In recent years, in North Africa Mediterranean countries (Morocco, Algeria, Tunisia, Libya and Egypt) the cancer registration coverage increased importantly, as a result of the establishment of new cancer registries (CRs) and the expansion of pre-existing ones.
This work aims to describe the current situation of cancer registration in the region, to gather and update available incidence data, and to make comparisons with European CRs.
 
Methods A web search for peer-review publications and reports, and direct contacts with CRs directors and researchers allowed to access the most updated data. Incidence rates were age-standardized on world population and compared with data from a pool of European CRs.
 
Results In 2015, 18 CRs were qualified as member of the International Association of Cancer Registries and other 2 actively published data on peer-review journals. The proportion of covered population varied from 8% for Algeria to 46% for Tunisia; the greatest improvement was observed in Egypt, with the 21% of the total population now covered and a National Cancer Registry Program able to provide national estimate for incidence rates. For the whole region the coverage reached the 14%.
Peculiarities in risk profiles showed a high risk of liver and bladder cancers in men in Libya and Egypt; low but increasing breast cancer rates in women; high levels of naso-pharynx carcinoma everywhere in the area, in both sexes.
 
Conclusions The cancer registration coverage increased in the whole area, despite of the socio-economic and political instability that affected some countries. The risk pattern is peculiar and coherent with what we know for other Islamic areas in Middle East; it is completely different from Europe, and, in particular from its Mediterranean part. Moreover, with low-moderate levels of infection related cancers, it is also completely different from Sub-Saharan Africa patterns.
 
Funding source
Funded by current institutional resources.