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Year : 2017  |  Volume : 14  |  Issue : 3  |  Page : 113-118

Head and neck cancers: An histopathologic review of cases seen in three Tertiary Hospitals in Northwestern Nigeria

1 Department of Oral and Maxillofacial Pathology/Biology, Lagos College of Medicine University of Idi-Araba, Lagos, Nigeria
2 Dental and Maxillofacial Surgery, College of Health Sciences Surgery Usmanu Danfodiyo University, Sokoto, Sokoto State, Nigeria
3 Department of Pathology, Usmanu Danfodiyo Universty Teaching Hospital, Sokoto, Sokoto State, Nigeria
4 Department of Laboratories Gusau, Federal Medical Center Gusau, Maiduguri, Borno, Nigeria
5 Department of Histopathology, University of Maiduguri Medical College, Maiduguri, Borno, Nigeria

Correspondence Address:
Abdul-Warith Olaitan Akinshipo
Department of Oral and Maxillofacial Pathology/Biology, Faculty of Dental Sciences, College of Medicine, University of Lagos, Idi-Araba, Lagos
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/jcls.jcls_18_17

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Context: Head and neck cancers (HNCs) display variable biological and geographical variations even within the same country. Aims: This study aims to determine the histopathologic pattern of HNCs in three Northwestern states of Kebbi, Sokoto, and Zamfara in Nigeria. Settings and Design: This was an hospital-based descriptive retrospective study carried out at Federal Medical Centre, Birnin Kebbi; Federal Medical Centre, Gusau; and Usmanu Danfodio Teaching Hospital, Sokoto. Subjects and Methods: Medical and histopathologic records of all HNCs seen at these centers between January 2006 and December 2013, were reviewed, and data on time of presentation, sociodemographic, anatomic site, and histology were collected and analyzed using the Statistical Package for the Social Sciences (version 20) (SPSS Inc., Chicago, IL, USA) statistical software. Quantitative data were summarized using simple descriptive statistics of means and standard deviation (SD). Chi-square tests were used to analyze the nonparametric variables. Statistical significance was inferred at P ≤ 0.05. Results: Three hundred and eighty-one malignant HNCs were seen over a period of 8 years with an annual frequency of 47 cases. There was a male to female ratio of 1.2:1, and the mean age was 39.5 ± 19.2 (±SD). About 70.3% of cases were carcinomas, 15.0% were sarcomas, and 8.7% were lymphomas. Squamous cell carcinoma (34.9%) was the highest carcinomas while non-Hodgkin's lymphomas (6.6%) and rhabdomyosarcoma (4.2%) were the most common lymphomas and sarcomas observed, respectively. The most common sites were those of the lips, oral cavity, and pharynx International Statistical Classification of Diseases-10 (C00–C14). Conclusions: This present study demonstrates the rising trend of HNCs in these regions and highlights the urgent need for adoption of grass root policies that would incorporate public participation especially those under 40 years, in the awareness on the harmful use of carcinogenic substances such as tobacco and alcohol and dangerous sexual habits. There should also be concerted promotion of targeted preventive strategies, early screening, treatment, support, and lifelong rehabilitation.

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