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Year : 2017  |  Volume : 20  |  Issue : 3  |  Page : 93-97

Breast cancer mortality in a resource-poor country: A 10-year experience in a tertiary institution

1 Department of Histopathology, National Hospital Abuja, Abuja, Nigeria
2 Department of Obstetrics and Gynaecology, National Hospital Abuja, Abuja, Nigeria

Correspondence Address:
Dr. Said Mohammed Amin
Department of Histopathology, National Hospital Abuja, P. O. Box, 14247, Abuja
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DOI: 10.4103/smj.smj_64_15

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Introduction: Breast cancer is a major global public health problem accounting for massive morbidity and significant mortality worldwide. Factors contributing to breast cancer mortality have been a topic of intense research and discussion in the scientific world. There is, however, a dearth of information on the incidence of breast cancer mortality in most resource-poor countries including Nigeria. Available data from most African workers on breast cancer focused on incidence, risk factors, and complications rather than mortality. The unique ethnic heterogeneity of Abuja and its peculiar lifestyle (as compared to other Nigerian cities) provides added impetus for assessing breast cancer mortality in one of the Nigeria's fastest growing cities. This study is carried out in a 400-bedded public tertiary hospital in Abuja, the capital of Nigeria. Materials and Methods: A retrospective review of all breast samples in the department of histopathology over a decade is performed supported by clinical information from the medical record archives. Results: Of 2292 breast samples received in the department, 35.3% (n = 810) are malignant out of which 10.6% (n = 86) died. Breast cancer incidence increased from 29 in 2005 to 141 by 2013 while mortality declined from 11 to 9 over the same period. A crude fatality rate of 3.7% is observed. The ages of the decedents ranged from 20 to 90 years with a mean of 43.5 years. Infiltrative ductal carcinoma accounts for the largest mortality with 87.4%. Conclusion: Breast cancer is an important cause of mortality among females and efforts at early detection and treatment should be intensified.

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