Esophageal Cancer mortality in Brazil: An Epidemiological analysis
INTRODUCTION: Esophageal cancer is responsible for high lethality rates and is often presented in the forms of squamous cell carcinoma and adenocarcinoma. The most common anatomical locations are in the distal third of the esophagus and at the esophagogastric junction. This cancer is more common in elderly men and, in the past, it occurred more frequently in black individuals, but currently, the incidence has been increasing in the white population, especially concerning adenocarcinoma. Macroscopically, esophageal tumors present lesions with an ulcerated, infiltrative, or sessile aspect, with narrowing of the esophageal lumen being common. Some risk factors have already been clarified, such as low consumption of fruits and vegetables, consumption of alcoholic beverages, smoking, exposure to carcinogens, such as polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons and nitrosamines, and frequent intake of high-temperature drinks. In addition, diseases such as symptomatic gastroesophageal reflux and Barrett's esophagus also increase the predisposition to the development of this cancer. AIM: To describe the occurrence of deaths caused by esophageal cancer in Brazil, according to sex and skin color, between 2016 and 2019. MATERIAL AND METHODS: This is a quantitative descriptive epidemiological study, carried out using secondary data extracted from the Department of Informatics of the Unified Health System (DATASUS), through the Mortality Information System (SIM). The data collected were: number of deaths from malignant esophageal neoplasia between 2016 and 2019 and place of occurrence. Additionally, the information was characterized by sex and skin color. RESULTS: There were 11.637 deaths from esophageal malignancy in Brazil between 2016 and 2019. In 2018 there was the highest number of deaths, with 25.5% (n = 2,963) of the total; in 2019, there was a slight decrease, with 23.6% (n = 2,749) of deaths. Of the total number of deaths, 77.8% (n = 9,055) occurred in males, while in females they accounted for 22.2% (n = 2,582) of the total, showing a significant prevalence in males. In addition, the majority of deaths were registered in white individuals, 38.0% (n = 4,431), followed by brown, 36.6% (n = 4,258). CONCLUSION: Esophageal cancer is an important public health problem in Brazil. Knowledge of the mortality profile can assist in the adoption of measures that intervene in these numbers. Thus, prevention, by encouraging healthy habits and early diagnosis, can help reduce mortality from esophageal malignancy in Brazil.
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