Aim:: To describe trends of mortality from leukemia and lymphomas in children below 20 years in Brazilian cities that has Population-Based Cancer Registries.
Methods:We used data from cancer deaths in children below 20 years obtained from the Mortality Information System/DATASUS for the period 1996 to 2008. Deaths from leukemia were considered those whose underlying cause of death was coded as C91 to C95 and deaths from lymphomas those with codes C81 to C85 and C96 according to ICD-10, for individuals of both sexes, residents in Brazilian capitals. The study period was stratified in three years and mortality rates for Brazil and the capitals, adjusted for population, have been calculated. To analyze mortality trends we used polynomial regression models considering 5% significance levels.
Results:A trend of non-constant decline in mortality rates was observed for lymphoma; for leukemia no model was statistically significant for Brazil. There were also variations in the patterns of mortality for hematological malignancies for a few Brazilian capitals. Leukemia had higher rates of mortality for the entire period and for all age groups. For lymphomas, decreased mortality rates were seen for all age groups except 10-14 years. For this last group an increment of mortality was observed for the last study period.
Conclusions:The declining mortality trends observed for Brazil could be a reflection of improved survival, particularly in recent years. Variations in mortality from hematological malignancies between the studied Capitals suggest differences in access to diagnosis and treatment for these diseases.