A new study shows that in the US, the frequency of anal cancer and the number of deaths are rising severely, especially among blacks and older people. The researchers examined the trend of anal cancer cases for about 16 years and determined that there were approximately 70,000 anal cancers and more than 13,000 deaths during this time.
Long-term disease means that cancer has spread to other parts of the body. From 2001 to 2015, the most common type of anal cancer cases increased by 2.5% per year, and from 2001 to 2016, anal cancer mortality increased by 3% per year. The study, published in the National Cancer Institute, given a movement that seems to be happening in the last ten years, said Dr. Shaffer, who is an associate professor at the Win Ship Cancer Institute at Emory University. Anal cancer occurs at the end of the digestive tract. It is different from rectal or colon cancer and is most similar to cervical cancer. The most prevalent subtype of anal cancer is squamous cell carcinoma, caused by human papillomavirus (HPV). According to the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, more than 85% of cases of anal cancer are related to HPV. Some high-risk groups have been separated for anal cancer, but the study authors believe their findings indicate that a broader screening should be measured carefully. But they also think that the increase in diagnosis is unlikely to be due to increased screening practices. Since the study, significant changes in the risk factors for anal cancer have occurred since the 1960s, including changes in sexual behavior and an increase in the number of sexual partners, both of which increase the possibility of HPV infection.
To strengthen prevention efforts, Dr. Shaffer said that all people eligible for vaccination should do so, and should review present vaccine guidelines to determine if they can be prolonged to other patients.