gms | German Medical Science

27th German Cancer Congress Berlin 2006

German Cancer Society (Frankfurt/M.)

22. - 26.03.2006, Berlin

Are geographic differences of cancer mortality in Bavaria caused by delayed disease detection?

Meeting Abstract

  • corresponding author presenting/speaker Anja Gärtig-Daugs - Bevölkerungsbezogenes Krebsregister Bayern - Registerstelle, Erlangen, Deutschland
  • Martin Meyer - Bevölkerungsbezogenes Krebsregister Bayern - Registerstelle, Erlangen
  • Martin Radespiel-Tröger - Bevölkerungsbezogenes Krebsregister Bayern - Registerstelle, Erlangen

27. Deutscher Krebskongress. Berlin, 22.-26.03.2006. Düsseldorf, Köln: German Medical Science; 2006. DocPO523

The electronic version of this article is the complete one and can be found online at:

Published: March 20, 2006

© 2006 Gärtig-Daugs et al.
This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License ( You are free: to Share – to copy, distribute and transmit the work, provided the original author and source are credited.



Aim of the study: Geographic differences of cancer mortality are frequently discussed in the public and politics in Bavaria [1], [2]. To answer questions of regional differences, a site specific analysis of cancer mortality is necessary. Therefore, the population based cancer registry Bavaria analyzed cancer related deaths in Bavaria specific for all tumour sites to find hints to possible reasons of mortality differences.

Methods: We analyzed the Bavarian death statistics with respect to sex and tumour site on the level of all 96 Bavarian districts. To reduce the influence of temporal variations, the mean cancer related deaths of the years 1998 to 2002 were regarded. We applied the Potthoff-Whittinghill-Test [3], a statistical test for homogeneity of spatial distributions, to assess regional differences. The geographic distribution of cancer deaths was assessed on the basis of mortality maps. In case of geographic differences, additional information on age and tumour stage at diagnosis taken from the incidence database was included in the analysis.

Results: Significant regional differences could be found mainly for those tumour sites which are commonly related to risk factors of smoking, alcohol and diet, i.e. tumours of oral cavity, pharynx, lung as well as stomach, colon and rectum. No relevant geographic differences were found for tumour types like lymphoma, leukaemia and brain tumours, which – according to current knowledge – do not depend on individual life style. Lung and colorectal cancer as one of the most common cancer diagnoses in Bavaria were analyzed in more detail to find out if the geographic differences might be due to delayed disease detection. Conclusion: The inclusion of incidence data from the cancer registry does not suggest an association between the observed regional differences of cancer mortality and delayed disease detection. Individual behaviour might have the strongest impact on regional differences of cancer mortality.

Figure 1 [Fig. 1], Table 1 [Tab. 1].


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