Background: Non-Hodgkin lymphoma (NHL) is a solid tumour of lymphocytes, important elements in the immune system. According to 2006 data, in Turkey the incidence was 6.5 per 100,000 in males, and 4.4 in females. The relationship between the use of pesticides and development of NHL has been extensively investigated in many studies, and it has been demonstrated that the risk of NHL is increased by exposure to such compounds. Antalya is a region of intensive agricultural activity. In this study, the relationship between the incidence of lymphoma in Antalya and the amount of pesticides employed was investigated.
Materials and methods: The study used data from 1995 to 2010 on the patients from the databank of TR Ministry of Health, Antalya Provincial Health Directorate, Cancer Registration Center and the patients who were histopathologically diagnosed with NHL during these years.
Results: The relationship between the amount of pesticide used and the incidence was studied with the Spearman correlation analysis and the p value was found as 0.05. The correlation coefficient was 0.497. An increase in the NHL incidence over the years was identified, with a 2.42-fold increment found from 1995 to 2005 and a 2.77 fold elevation from 1995 to 2010. The use of pesticides increased 1.89 fold over the same period.
Conclusions: Our study investigated the relationship of the pesticides used with NHL patients diagnosed during the same year. Since the time elapsing after exposure to pesticides until the development of cancer is not clear, no comparison can be made at present. We believe that the increase in use of pesticides since 1995 may be associated with the increase in the incidence of NHLand therefore that further studies on the issue including measurements of serum pesticide levels, are required.