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Revista de Saúde Pública

versão impressa ISSN 0034-8910versão On-line ISSN 1518-8787


MENDONCA, Guinar Azevedo e Silva. Cancer among women in Brazil. Rev. Saúde Pública [online]. 1993, vol.27, n.1, pp.68-75. ISSN 0034-8910.

This study seeks to show the importance of cancer as a cause of morbidity and mortality among Brazilian women. Mortality data from the Health Ministry and incidence data from the six Brazilian Population Based Cancer Registries (Belém, Fortaleza, Recife, S. Paulo, Porto Alegre e Goiânia) were used. Cancer accounted for 15.5% of all deaths in women above fifteen years of age, in 1986. Breast and uterine cancer were responsible for some 30% of these deaths. International comparisons show that Recife and Belém had the highest incidence rates from cervical cancer in the world. The incidence of breast cancer in Porto Alegre, S. Paulo, Fortaleza and Goiânia approximated to the figures for regions of high incidence such as the United States and some European countries. Risk factors in leading female cancers are discussed in the light of cultural, social and geographical differences, as well as the development of screening programs. It is concluded that screening and early-detection programs for cervical and breast cancer had very low coverage in the country. The insertion of actions for the prevention and early diagnosis of cervical and breast cancers in women's health care programs should be considered one of the priorities for public health in Brazil.

Palavras-chave : Neoplasms [mortality]; Women's health; Risk factors.

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