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Eur J Cancer Prev. 2001 Oct;10(5):407-15.

Skin melanoma in Saarland: incidence, survival and mortality 1970-1996.

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  • 1Institute for Medical Informatics, Biometry and Epidemiology, Medical Faculty, University of Essen, Hufelandstrasse 55, 45122 Essen, Germany. andreas.stang@uni-essen.de

Abstract

Over the past few decades, the incidence of cutaneous malignant melanoma has been rising in both sexes in almost all developed countries, notably those with fair-skinned populations. Detailed population-based time trend analyses of skin melanoma incidence and survival in Germany accounting for stage have not been published until now. We analysed skin melanoma data from the population-based Saarland Cancer Registry in Germany from 1970 to 1996. Incidence rates were age-standardized. We estimated 5-year disease-specific survival rates and evaluated the effects of sex, age, calendar period and staging on the prognosis in Cox's proportional hazards models. From 1970-1972 to 1994-1996, melanoma incidence increased 170% from 2.4 to 6.5 per 100 000 person-years among men and 150% from 2.4 to 6.0 per 100 000 person-years among women. Mortality rates peaked in 1988-1990. After 1988-1990, mortality rates declined among women and remained roughly constant among men. The increase in the incidence of localized melanoma and T1-T2 melanoma respectively is driving the overall incidence trend. The improvement of survival over time is most likely due to earlier detection of skin melanoma. In the 1990s, about 30% of all newly diagnosed skin melanoma had stage T3 or T4, implying that further improvement in survival by earlier detection is feasible.

PMID:
11711755
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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