Objective: The objective of this study was to identify the characteristics of oral cancer among Malay patientsin Hospital Universiti Sains Malaysia (HUSM), Kelantan.
Methods: A retrospective record review was conductedfrom August to December 2006 in HUSM. Of 133 patients with oral cancer diagnosed from 1986 to 2005, 118were Malay. Data on socio-demographic background, high-risk habits practiced, clinical and histologicalcharacteristics, and treatment profile of the patients were obtained.
Results: Malay patients with oral cancerwere predominantly elderly, aged 60 years old and above (51.7%) at the time of diagnosis, with a mean age of58.1 years (SD 16.81). Most patients were males (64.4%) and the majority of them were married (83.9%). Morethan half (58.5%) had been smokers, and of those who smoked, 89.9% were males. Some had a betel quidchewing habit (22.9%) but none ever consumed alcohol. The majority of the patients (77.1%) were diagnosed atstage IV. The tongue was the most usual site involved (37.3%) and squamous cell carcinoma was the mostcommon histological type seen (75.4%).
Conclusions: The prevalence of oral cancer among Malay patients inHUSM is high (88.7%). It is predominantly found in elderly males and the majority of cases present at advancedstage.