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The Incidence Rate of Liver Cancer in Saudi Arabia: An Observational Descriptive Epidemiological Analysis of Data from the Saudi Cancer Registry (2004–2014)

Authors Alghamdi IG, Alghamdi MS

Received 26 September 2019

Accepted for publication 21 January 2020

Published 13 February 2020 Volume 2020:12 Pages 1101—1111


Checked for plagiarism Yes

Review by Single anonymous peer review

Peer reviewer comments 2

Editor who approved publication: Professor Lu-Zhe Sun

Ibrahim G Alghamdi,1 Mohamed S Alghamdi2

1University of Al-Baha, College of Applied Medical Sciences, Public Health Department, Al-Baha, Saudi Arabia; 2Ministry of Health, General Directorate of Health Affairs Al-Baha, Al-Baha, Saudi Arabia

Correspondence: Ibrahim G Alghamdi
University of Al-Baha, College of Applied Medical Sciences, Public Health Department, Prince Mohammad Bin Saud, Al-Baha 65527, Saudi Arabia
Tel +96 655 3777925

Objective: This study describes the epidemiological pattern of liver cancer in all regions of Saudi Arabia. It explores the frequency of cases diagnosed, the age-specific incidence rate (AIR), the crude incidence rate (CIR), and the age-standardised incidence rate (ASIR) stratified by age group, year of diagnosis, and region.
Methods: A retrospective descriptive epidemiological analysis of all liver cancer cases documented in the Saudi Cancer Registry (SCR) between 2004 and 2014 was performed. The data were analysed using descriptive statistics, t-test, Kruskal–Wallis, and sex ratio with the Statistical Package for the Social Sciences version 20.0 (SPSS).
Results: A total of 4723 liver cancer cases were registered in the SCR between January 2004 and December 2014. The highest overall ASIR of liver cancer among Saudi males was observed in the regions of Riyadh, Najran, and Tabuk at 10.4, 7.7, and 7.0 per 100,000 males, respectively. Furthermore, Riyadh, Eastern Region, and Tabuk recorded the highest overall ASIR among Saudi females at 4.9, 2.8, and 2.6 per 100,000 females, respectively. Jazan had the lowest overall ASIR (1.7 per 100,000 males) of liver cancer among male Saudis, while the Northern region and Baha had the lowest overall ASIR (0.6 and 0.9 per 100,000 females, respectively) of liver cancer among female Saudis. However, the overall ASIR of liver cancer was statistically higher in males than females (P-value < 0.05), and the overall male-to-female ratio in ASIR of liver cancer in Saudi Arabia was 2.4 per 100,000.
Conclusion: There was a slight increase in the CIRs and ASIRs of liver cancer in Saudi Arabia between 2004 and 2014. Riyadh, Najran, and Tabuk were the areas most affected by liver cancer among Saudi males, and Riyadh, Eastern Region, and Tabuk among female Saudis. The areas least affected by liver cancer were observed in Jazan among Saudi males, and the Northern region and Baha among Saudi females. The rates of liver cancer in Saudi Arabia were significantly higher among males compared with female Saudis.

Keywords: cancer epidemiology, liver cancer, Saudi cancer registry, hepatocarcinoma, incidence rate

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