Trends in eye cancer mortality among children in Brazil, 1980-2002

Pediatr Blood Cancer. 2007 Mar;48(3):296-305. doi: 10.1002/pbc.20826.


Background: In the last few decades mortality from childhood cancers has shown substantial declines in industrialized countries, with smaller favorable trends in South America.

Objective: This study describes mortality trends in childhood eye cancer in Brazil from 1980 to 2002.

Procedure: Age-specific eye cancer death rates (0-4, 5-9, and 10-14 years) were calculated according to gender. Age-standardized mortality rates for children under 15 years were obtained through the direct method, using the 1960 world population as the standard. Trends in mortality were modeled using linear regression methods, with the age-standardized mortality coefficient (3-year centered moving average) as the dependent variable and the calendar year as the independent variable.

Results: The age-standardized mortality rates among the boys decreased from 0.14/100,000 habitants in 1981 and 1985 to 0.06 in 1994, whereas the observed corresponding decline among girls was from 0.17/100,000 habitants in 1982 and 1983 to 0.07 in 2001. Statistically significant declining trends in eye cancer mortality rates were observed for boys (r(2) adjusted = 0.54, P < 0.001) and also for girls (r(2) adjusted = 0.53, P < 0.001). When only subsite retina was analyzed a statistically significant decrease in mortality coefficients was also noted for males (r(2) adjusted = 0.55, P < 0.001) and females (r(2) adjusted = 0.32, P = 0.005).

Conclusions: A consistent decrease in eye cancer mortality rates was noted in Brazil. In the absence of changes in incidence rates, this decline could be attributed to the improvement in treatment protocols and survival.

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Age Distribution
  • Brazil / epidemiology
  • Child
  • Child, Preschool
  • Disease Management
  • Eye Neoplasms / mortality*
  • Eye Neoplasms / therapy
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Infant
  • Infant, Newborn
  • Male
  • Mortality / trends
  • Retinoblastoma / mortality
  • Retinoblastoma / therapy
  • Retrospective Studies
  • Sex Distribution