Gynaecological malignancies in Azare, North-East Nigeria: an assessment of types, stage at presentation and treatment affordability
Keywords:Gynaecological malignancies, Late presentation, Treatment affordability
Background: In many parts of the world, presentations for most gynecological cancers are late; this makes treatment difficult due to the cost of chemotherapy or radiotherapy which form the bedrock for cure or palliation. Objective of this study was to determine the types, stage at diagnosis, affordability of care and outcome of treatment of gynaecological cancers in Federal Medical Centre Azare, Bauchi State, Nigeria.
Methods: All cases of gynaecological cancers seen over a ten-year period, from 1st January, 2003 to 31st December, 2012 were reviewed retrospectively. The number of all gynaecological cases seen during the period was also extracted.
Results: Gynaecological cancer cases accounted for 11.84 % of 8,642 gynaecological cases seen during the period of study. The mean age and parity of the women were 42±5 SD years and 5±1 SD respectively. Cervical cancer accounted for 55 %, ovarian cancer 30%, endometrial cancer 6%, choriocarcinoma 5%, secondaries/ cancers of undetermined origin were 4%. Ninety-two percent presented with advanced stage of diseases. Only 25.3% could afford the cost of full treatment, and 8.4% attained cure of their disease. The modalities of treatment available were surgery and chemotherapy.
Conclusions: Cervical and Ovarian Cancers remain the leading types of gynaecological cancers in our environment and late presentations are frequent occurrence. Late presentation and unaffordability of treatments are major challenges associated with the management of these patients. Early presentation and funding mechanisms for gynaecological cancers are keys to improved cure rate and reduced mortality.
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