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||Colorectal cancer incidence trends by subsite in urban Shanghai, 1972-1994.
||Ji BT, Devesa SS, Chow WH, Jin F, Gao YT
||Cancer Epidemiol Biomarkers Prev
||Epidemiological characteristics of colorectal cancer may differ by particular anatomical subsite, suggesting that the subsite-specific colorectal cancers may represent different disease entities. This study explored the time trends over a 23-year period in colorectal cancer incidence at various subsites by sex and age group. Data on the incidence of colorectal cancer were obtained from a population-based cancer registry in Shanghai, People's Republic of China. Between 1972 and 1994, 30,693 patients with colorectal cancer were registered at the Shanghai Cancer Registry. The overall age-adjusted colorectal cancer incidence rates increased > 50%, or 2% per year from 1972-1977 to 1990-1994, from 14 to 22 per 100,000 among men and from 12 to 19 per 100,000 among women. The increases in rates were considerably more rapid for colon cancer, with rates approximately doubling, than they were for rectal cancer. Proximal colon cancer was more common than distal colon cancer over the whole study period, whereas rates for both cancers rose with similar annual percentage changes (> 5% per year) and across virtually all age groups. The estimated annual increases rose from 2% at ages 35-44 years to 7% at ages 75-84 years for proximal colon cancer, but they were more uniform for distal colon cancer (5-6% per year). Age-adjusted and age-specific rectal cancer rates changed little. The male:female age-adjusted rate ratio for colorectal cancer was 1.19 in 1990-1994. The ratios increased over time and varied by subsites, with ratios increasing from the proximal colon to the distal colon and to the rectum. Furthermore, men had higher rates than women for distal colon and rectal cancers at ages 55 and older, whereas women had higher rates than men at younger ages for these two cancers. Male:female rate ratios for proximal colon cancer did not vary substantially with age. The findings from this study indicate that subsite-specific incidence rates of colorectal cancer differ by sex and age and in their time trends. Cancers arising in the proximal colon, distal colon, and rectum may have somewhat different disease etiologies.