Patterns of Cancer in Kurdistan - Results of Eight Years Cancer Registration in Sulaymaniyah Province-Kurdistan-Iraq

  • Khoshnaw, Najmaddin (Department of Hematology, Hiwa Hospital) ;
  • Mohammed, Hazha A (Department of Medicine, School of Medicine, Faculty of Medical Sciences, University of Sulaimani) ;
  • Abdullah, Dana A (Department of Pathology and Forensic Pathology, School of Medicine, Faculty of Medical Sciences, University of Sulaimani)
  • Published : 2016.01.11


Background: Cancer has become a major health problem associated with high mortality worldwide, especially in developing countries. The aim of our study was to evaluate the incidence rates of different types of cancer in Sulaymaniyah from January-2006 to January-2014. The data were compared with those reported for other middle east countries. Materials and Methods: This retrospective study depended on data collected from Hiwa hospital cancer registry unit, death records and histopathology reports in all Sulaymaniyah teaching hospitals, using international classification of diseases. Results: A total of 8,031 cases were registered during the eight year period, the annual incidence rate in all age groups rose from 38 to 61.7 cases/100,000 population/year, with averages over 50 in males and 50.7 in females. The male to female ratio in all age groups were 0.98, while in the pediatric age group it was 1.33. The hematological malignancies in all age groups accounted for 20% but in the pediatric group around half of all cancer cases. Pediatric cancers were occluding 7% of total cancers with rates of 10.3 in boys and 8.7 in girls. The commonest malignancies by primary site were leukemia, lymphoma, brain, kidney and bone. In males in all age groups they were lung, leukaemia, lymphoma, colorectal, prostate, bladder, brain, stomach, carcinoma of unknown primary (CUP) and skin, while in females they were breast, leukaemia, lymphoma, colorectal, ovary, lung, brain, CUP, and stomach. Most cancers were increased with increasing age except breast cancer where decrease was noted in older ages. High mortality rates were found with leukemia, lung, lymphoma, colorectal, breast and stomach cancers. Conclusions: We here found an increase in annual cancer incidence rates across the period of study, because of increase of cancer with age and higher rates of hematological malignancies. Our study is valuable for Kurdistan and Iraq because it provides more accurate data about the exact patterns of cancer and mortality in our region.


Cancer;incidence;epidemiology;Hiwa hospital;Sulaymaniyah-Iraq


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