Cancer incidence patterns (1972-91) among migrants from the Soviet Union to Israel

Cancer Causes Control. 1998 Jan;9(1):29-36. doi: 10.1023/a:1008893102428.


A proportional cancer incidence analysis is reported, based on 6,563 cases of cancer diagnosed in Israel between 1972 and 1991 among migrants from the former Soviet Union who arrived in Israel between 1972 and 1986. For digestive system cancers, there is evidence of a marked reduction in the risk of stomach cancer among the migrants with time since migration, and an increase in the proportion of colon cancer, although little change in cancer of the rectum. For most of the smoking-related cancers, there is little evidence of any meaningful change in proportions with time since immigration. For multiple myeloma, proportions decreased substantially in both men and women over the 20-year period. Among women, there is a small, statistically significant increase in breast cancer, and a marked decrease in cancer of the cervix. Among younger immigrants, the proportion of malignant melanoma has increased substantially since migration. A number of the changes in cancer patterns are consistent with various etiologic hypotheses including those based on possible dietary and other lifestyle changes among the migrants.

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Child
  • Child, Preschool
  • Diet
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Incidence
  • Infant
  • Infant, Newborn
  • Israel / epidemiology
  • Life Style
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Neoplasms / epidemiology*
  • Neoplasms / ethnology
  • Registries*
  • Retrospective Studies
  • Risk Factors
  • Transients and Migrants*
  • USSR / ethnology