A new analysis has found that rates of testicular cancer have been rising dramatically in recent years among young Hispanic American men, but not among their non-Hispanic counterparts. The findings indicate that greater awareness is needed concerning the increasing risk of testicular cancer in Hispanic adolescents and young adults, and that research efforts are needed to determine the cause of this trend.
Testicular cancer is one of the most common types of cancer among adolescent and young adult men, and it is also one of the most readily treatable. Rebecca Johnson, MD, of Seattle Children’s Hospital in Washington, and her colleagues analyzed trends in testicular cancer rates in two datasets of the National Cancer Institute’s Surveillance, Epidemiology, and End Results (SEER) program. The datasets spanned 1992 to 2010 and 2000 to 2010 and they sampled 15% and 28% of the United States population, respectively. Their study was published in Cancer (2014; doi:10.1002/cncr.28684).
The investigators found that between 1992 and 2010, the annual incidence of testicular cancer in 15- to 39-year-old Hispanic whites increased 58% from 7.18 cases per 100,000 in 1992 to 11.34 cases per 100,000 by 2010. Incidence rates increased in metropolitan areas for different subtypes of testicular cancer and for all stages of disease at the time of diagnosis. In the same 19-year interval, testicular germ cell tumor incidence among non-Hispanic white young adults increased 7%, from 12.41 to 13.22 per 100,000. During the 2000 to 2010 interval, incidence rates rose in Hispanic whites but no significant trends were observed in incidence rates among non-Hispanic whites.
Johnson noted that, historically, non-Hispanic white men have had the highest rate of testicular cancer of all racial and ethnic groups in the United States; however, this study’s findings suggest that if the current trends continue, the rate of testicular cancer among Hispanic Americans will outpace that of non-Hispanic white men within the next few years.
“Hispanic Americans comprise the fastest growing ethnic group in the United States. Until only recently, cancer incidence data for this population has been too sparse to accurately analyze testicular cancer trends among Hispanic men,” said Johnson. “The increasing rate of testicular cancer in adolescent and young adult Hispanic males, combined with the rapid expansion of the Hispanic population in the United States, is projected to have a measurable impact on the United States health care system.”