Objectives: To determine the pattern of gastrointestinal (GI) malignancies in northern Pakistan. Design: A retrospective pathology based tumour registry data analysis. Place and Duration: January 1992 to December 2001 at the Armed Forces Institute of Pathology, Rawalpindi, Pakistan. Materials and
Methods: All histologically diagnosed malignant tumours of GI tract registered with the tumour registry were retrieved from the case files. Basic epidemiological data regarding each case was collected from the request forms and then analysed for the site of involvement, age distribution and histological types of tumours.
Results: During the study period a total of 2279 patients had GI tract malignancies, constituting 10.8% of all malignant tumours diagnosed in this period. Males were more frequently affected than females (M:F ratio 2.3:1). Peak incidence was in the 50-60 year age group. Colorectal tumours were most frequent (44.6%), followed by stomach (24%), esophagus (22.6%), anal (4.6%) and small intestinal (3.7%) malignancies. Ten cases of malignant tumours of the appendix, 6 in females and 4 in males were also found. The histological pattern was predictable. Statistical analysis showed that there was significant increase (P<0.01)in registration of stomach, anorectal and small intestinal tumours over the period studied,whereas esophagus and colorectal tumours remained the same.
Conclusion: Colorectal tumours are more frequent in our material as compared to other developing countries. Peak incidence is in slightly younger age group and cases in <20 years age group are also more frequent as compared to Western studies.