Background: Over the last 4 decades, childhood cancer mortality declined in most developed areas of the world. However, scant information is available from middle-income and developing countries. The authors analyzed and compared patterns in childhood cancer mortality in 24 developed and middle-income countries in America, Asia, and Oceania between 1970 and 2007. Methods: Childhood age-standardized annual mortality rates were derived from the World Health Organization (WHO) database for all neoplasms, bone and kidney cancer, non-Hodgkin lymphoma (NHL), and leukemias. Results: Since 1970, rates for all childhood cancers dropped from approximately 8 per 100,000 boys to 3 per 100,000 boys and from 6 per 100,000 girls to 2 per 100,000 girls in North America and Japan. Latin American countries registered rates of approximately 5 per 100,000 boys and 4 per 100,000 girls for 2005 through 2007, similar to the rates registered in more developed areas in the early 1980s. Similar patterns were observed for leukemias, for which the mortality rates were 0.81 per 100,000 boys and 0.55 per 100,000 girls in North America, 0.86 per 100,000 boys and 0.68 per 100,000 girls in Japan, and 1.98 per 100,000 boys and 1.65 per 100,000 girls in Latin America for 2005 through 2007. Bone cancer rates for 2005 through 2007 were approximately 2-fold higher in Argentina than in the United States. During the same period, Mexico registered the highest rate for kidney cancer and Colombia registered the highest rate for NHL, whereas the lowest rates were registered by Japan for kidney and by Japan and the United States for NHL. CONCLUSIONS: Improvements in the adoption of current integrated treatment protocols in Latin American and other lower-and middle-income countries worldwide would avoid a substantial proportion of childhood cancer deaths.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Cancer Research