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Testicular cancer mortality in the Americas, 1980-2003
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BACKGROUND.: Testicular cancer is generally curable if appropriate treatment is given. Data and statistics on testicular cancer mortality over the last decades are available from the US and Canada, but are more difficult to find, in a standard and comparable format, for Central and South American countries. The objective of the study was to compare death rates and trends over the 1980-2003 period in all the American countries that provide data. METHODS.: Overall and 20 to 44 years age-standardized (world population) mortality rates from testicular cancer, derived from the World Health Organization (WHO) database, are presented for the most recent available calendar years in 10 American countries. Trends in mortality for selected countries of the Americas are also given over the period 1980-2003. RESULTS.: In the early 1980s the highest testicular cancer mortality rates were observed in Chile (1.7/100,000 at all ages, 3.6/100,000 at 20-44 years) and Argentina (0.9/100,000 at all ages, 1.7/100,000 at 20-44 years), as compared with 0.4/100,000 for all ages and 0.6/100,000 at 20 to 44 years in Canada, and 0.3/100,000 for all ages and 0.7/100,000 at 20 to 44 years in the US. In 2001-2003, testicular cancer mortality had fallen to 0.2/100,000 in men aged 20 to 44 years in Canada, and to 0.4/100,000 in the US. Conversely, rates were still 1.6/100,000 in Argentina, 2.2/100,000 in Chile and 1.2/100,000 in Mexico, and were around 0.5-0.6/100,000 in most other Latin American countries that provide data. CONCLUSIONS.: Mortality from testicular cancer in (young) men remains exceedingly high in most Latin American countries. Urgent intervention is required to provide treatment (essentially modern integrated platinum-based chemotherapy) for this largely curable neoplasm in young men. [Ed.]
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