Ethnicity differences in breast cancer stage at the time of diagnosis in Norway

Scand J Surg. 2015 Dec;104(4):248-53. doi: 10.1177/1457496914565420. Epub 2015 Feb 27.

Abstract

Background and aims: Several studies have demonstrated that breast cancer survival rates differ with ethnicity. Most of these studies analyzed discrepancies between African-American and Caucasian-American women and were performed in the United States. There are increasing concerns about differences in breast cancer survival among immigrants from Asia and Africa living in Europe, including those living in Scandinavian countries. There are few data on breast cancer survival in relation to race or ethnicity in Scandinavian countries, even though immigrants from Asia and Africa have lived in Scandinavian countries for decades. The aim of this study was to identify variations in breast cancer incidence, treatment modalities, relapse, and survival among women from Pakistan, Sri Lanka, and Somalia compared to ethnic Norwegian women.

Material and methods: The incidence, treatment modalities, relapse, and survival of breast cancer were analyzed in women from Pakistan, Sri Lanka, and Somalia in a nation-based study over a period of 7 ears. Results for women from Pakistan, Sri Lanka, and Somalia were compared with those from a group of ethnic Norwegian women during the same period. In our study, 63 patients from Pakistan, Sri Lanka, and Somalia were diagnosed with breast cancer during the period 2002-2009 in Norway.

Results and conclusion: Comparison between women from Pakistan, Sri Lanka, and Somalia and ethnic women from Norway revealed significant differences in cancer stage at the time of diagnosis, age at diagnosis, type of surgical treatment, and relapse and breast cancer mortality rates. The findings of this study demonstrate that the outcome after a breast cancer diagnosis is significantly worse for women from Pakistan, Sri Lanka, and Somalia than for ethnic Norwegian women. In addition, the mean age at the breast cancer diagnosis was lower for women from Pakistan, Sri Lanka, and Somalia, especially those from Sri Lanka and Somalia, than for ethnic Norwegian women.

Keywords: Breast cancer; ethnicity; relapse; stage; surgery; survival.

Publication types

  • Multicenter Study
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Age Distribution
  • Aged
  • Biopsy
  • Breast Neoplasms / diagnosis
  • Breast Neoplasms / ethnology*
  • Breast Neoplasms / therapy
  • Combined Modality Therapy
  • Ethnic Groups*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Incidence
  • Mammography / methods*
  • Middle Aged
  • Morbidity / trends
  • Neoplasm Recurrence, Local / ethnology
  • Neoplasm Staging / methods*
  • Norway / epidemiology
  • Pakistan / ethnology
  • Registries*
  • Risk Assessment / methods*
  • Risk Factors
  • Somalia / ethnology
  • Sri Lanka / ethnology
  • Survival Rate / trends