Cancer in Children at El Obeid Hospital, Western Sudan.
Background: Cancers form one of the major causes of death in children. They differ markedly from adult cancers in their nature, distribution and prognosis. Objectives: To determine the pattern of childhood cancer at El Obeid Hospital, Western Sudan. Patients and Methods: The records of all patients admitted with cancer aged 15 years and below to
the wards of El Obeid Hospital, Western Sudan over two years were studied. The cancers were classified according to the organs affected and then ranked in their order of relative frequency. The mean age, age range, gender and the relative frequency rates were calculated. Results: There were 40 newly diagnosed childhood cancer patients during the study period. Males were 29 patients (72.5%). The age ranged three months to 14 years. Leukaemias were the most common malignancy in both sexes, followed by bone tumours and then nephroblastoma.
Conclusions: Cancers in children were seen at Western Sudan, and cases admitted to hospital only reflect the tip of the iceberg as many cases were directly referred to Oncology Hospitals. Establishment of a local radiation and isotopes centre is needed in this part of the country to provide oncology services and to integrate preventive programs.
Key words: Acute lymphocytic leukaemia, osteosarcoma, nephroblastoma, Western Sudan.
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