Background: Breast cancer is the most common malignancy in women worldwide and its incidence is generally increasing. In 2012, it was the second most common cancer in the world. It is necessary to obtain information on incidence and mortality for health planning. This study aimed to investigate the relationship between the human development index (HDI), and the incidence and mortality rates of breast cancer in the world in 2012. Materials and
Methods: This ecologic study concerns incidence rate and standardized mortality rates of the cancer from GLOBOCAN in 2012, and HDI and its components extracted from the global bank site. Data were analyzed using correlation tests and regression with SPSS software (version 15).
Results: Among the six regions of WHO, the highest breast cancer incidence rate (67.6) was observed in the PAHO, and the lowest incidence rate was 27.8for SEARO. There was a direct, strong, and meaningful correlation between the standardized incidence rate and HDI (r=0.725, p≤0.001). Pearson correlation test showed that there was a significant correlation between age-specific incidence rate (ASIR) and components of the HDI (life expectancy at birth, mean years of schooling, and GNP). On the other, a non-significant relationship was observed between ASIR and HDI overall (r=0.091, p=0.241). In total, a significant relationship was not found between age-specific mortality rate (ASMR) and components of HDI.
Conclusions: Significant positive correlations exist between ASIR and components of the HDI. Socioeconomic status is directly related to the stage of the cancer and patient’s survival. With increasing the incidence rate of the cancer, mortality rate from the cancer does not necessariloy increase. This may be due to more early detection and treatment in developed that developing countries. It is necessary to increase awareness of risk factors and early detection in the latter.