Estimating the Burden of Head and Neck Cancers in the Public Health Sector of Pakistan


This study was designed to establish the burden of head and neck cancers (HNCA) in public sector basedcancer centres of Pakistan. Data were obtained from the central body governing all the cancer centres in thecountry. The frequency of treated HNCAs out of the total body cancers treated across Pakistan was found to be14.5%. Highest prevalence rates amongst all cancers were noted in Sind, notably in Karachi and Jamshoro,followed by Multan in Punjab and as much lower frequency in Peshawar in the North West Frontier Province.This variation presumably reflects levels of betel quid consumption but more data are needed to be gathered ina comprehensive way if the findings are to be applicable for improvement of the national cancer control program.