Tuesday, May 4, 2010 (Last Updated: 05/05/2010)
TUESDAY, May 4 (HealthDay News) -- The incidence of noncardia gastric cancer has declined overall in America since the late 1970s but increased among whites aged 25 to 39, and the use of adjuvant chemotherapy for gastric cancer is associated with lower mortality risk compared to surgery alone, according to two studies in the May 5 issue of the Journal of the American Medical Association.
William F. Anderson, M.D., of the National Cancer Institute in Rockville, Md., and colleagues analyzed Surveillance, Epidemiology, and End Results data on cancer incidence for 1977 to 2006. The researchers focused specifically on noncardia gastric cancer. They found that the overall age-standardized annual incidence declined in whites, blacks, and other races during this period. However, the incidence rate increased in whites ages 25 to 39 years.
Xavier Paoletti, Ph.D., of the Institut National du Cancer in Boulogne, France, and colleagues in the GASTRIC Group analyzed data from a meta-analysis of 17 trials that compared adjuvant chemotherapy with surgery alone in patients with resectable gastric cancer. Adjuvant chemotherapy was associated with a benefit for overall survival (hazard ratio, 0.82) and disease-free survival (hazard ratio, 0.82). With chemotherapy, five-year overall survival increased from 49.6 to 55.3 percent.
"The enigma of gastric cancer continues. It remains the second most common gastrointestinal malignancy internationally and is responsible for the most gastrointestinal cancer-related deaths worldwide. Many challenges lie ahead to better identify subsets of gastric cancer and therefore recommend individualized approaches to prevention, early detection, and therapy," write the authors of an accompanying editorial.
An editorial co-author disclosed financial relationships with a number of pharmaceutical companies.
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