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Cancer Incidence in the U.S. Air Force: 1989-2002

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Yamane GK. Cancer incidence in the U.S. Air Force: 1989-2002. Aviat Space Environ Med 2006; 77:789–794.



Background: Cancer incidence in U.S. Air Force active duty (AFAD) personnel is unknown. Defining the epidemiology may support more effective prevention and clinical services. Methods: Standardized incidence ratios (SIRs) for invasive cancer in AFAD personnel during 1989–2002 were determined using U.S. national incidence rates as the reference. SIRs were adjusted for age and race. Cutaneous squamous and basal cell carcinomas (CAs) were excluded. Results: There were 2750 cases: 1986 in men and 764 in women. The all-cancers SIRs were for men, 0.50 (95% CI: 0.48–0.53), and for women, 0.96 (95% CI: 0.89–1.03). Among men, the 10 most frequent cancers (77.6% of total) were, in descending order: melanoma; testicular CA; prostate CA; non-Hodgkin lymphoma; follicular/papillary thyroid CA; Hodgkin’s Disease; colorectal CA; brain neuroepithelial CA; and (tied) bladder CA and oral squamous cell CA. Among women, the 10 most frequent cancers (88.1% of total) were, in descending order: breast CA; cervical CA; follicular/papillary thyroid CA; melanoma; Hodgkin’s Disease; colorectal CA; (tied) non-Hodgkin lymphoma and ovarian epithelial CA; vulvar CA; and (tied) brain neuroepithelial CA and oral squamous cell CA. Compared with the U.S. population, cancer type-specific SIRs were significantly increased for cervical CA, prostate CA, and vulvar CA (range, 1.44–3.54). SIRs were significantly decreased for bladder CA (men), brain neuroepithelial CA, colorectal CA (men), Hodgkin’s Disease (men), non-Hodgkin lymphoma, oral squamous cell CA (men), and testicular CA (range, 0.31–0.68). The remaining SIRs were not significantly different from unity. Conclusions: The cancer experience of the AFAD population differs substantially from that of the U.S. population.
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Keywords: Air Force; aerospace; cancer; epidemiology; incidence; military

Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: 2006-08-01

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