ecancermedicalscience

Research

Burden of mortality from cancer among adults in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, using verbal autopsy, 2007–2017

14 Jul 2022
Tsion Afework, Birtukan Seid, Aderaw Anteneh, Wondimu Ayele, Seifu Hagos Gebreyesus, Bilal Shikur Endris

Background: Cancer is one of the leading causes of death; worldwide, there were 10.0 million cancer deaths in 2020. In Ethiopia, 51,865 people died from the disease in the same year. We aimed to describe the burden of cancer mortality, the socio-demographic and other characteristics of deceased adults in Addis Ababa from 2007 to 2017.

Methods: This study was part of the Addis Ababa Mortality Surveillance Programme. Based on the burial-based surveillance, there were 133,170 adult deaths from 2007 to 2017. The standard verbal autopsy questionnaire was applied to collect information on the causes of death of 10% of the randomly selected deaths.

Results: Cancer accounted for 11% of all deaths studied. The median age of death in years was 60 (range = 47–70). Stomach cancer was the leading cause of cancer death (131, 13.6%), followed by breast cancer (116, 12.0%) and liver cancer (101, 10.5%).

Conclusion: Cancer-related deaths accounted for a significant portion of all deaths. Premature deaths accounted for majority of the deaths. Cancer deaths were most commonly caused by stomach, breast and liver cancers. Advocating for a healthy lifestyle, effective cancer screening and effective alcohol-control regulations should be tailored to the country.

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