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Year : 2020  |  Volume : 12  |  Issue : 4  |  Page : 272-279

Trends, and tumor characteristics of lung cancer and malignant pleural mesothelioma in the East of Libya

1 Gastroenterology and Hepatology Unit, Benghazi Medical Center, Benghazi, Libya
2 Oncology Department, Tobruk Medical Center, Tobruk, Libya
3 Department of Oncology, Benghazi Medical Center, Benghazi, Libya

Correspondence Address:
Dr. Wail A Eldukali
Gastroenterology and Hepatology Unit, Benghazi Medical Center, Second Ring Road, Benghazi
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/ijmbs.ijmbs_79_20

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Background: Lung cancer is the most common cancer worldwide and the leading cancer killer. Lung cancer is classified histologically into two types; small-cell lung cancer and nonsmall-cell lung cancer (NSCLC) (squamous cell carcinoma, adenocarcinoma (AC), large cell carcinoma [LCC]). Malignant pleural mesothelioma is a rare thoracic tumor. We aimed to provide comprehensive epidemiological data about lung cancer in the eastern part of Libya. Patients and Methods: A retrospective medical records review of lung cancer patients attending the oncology department of Benghazi Medical Center from January 1, 2006 to December 31, 2015. Results: There were 684 lung cancer cases out of 7725 total registered cancer cases (8.85%), 627 were male (91.7%, median age 63.5), and 57 females (8.3%, median age 64). NSCLC was the dominant histology 78.5%, SCLC 11%, and malignant mesothelioma 2.5%. NSCLC subtypes were AC (35.1%), squamous carcinoma (25.7%), LCC (4.6%), and not otherwise specified (12.6%). Only 30.6% of cases were diagnosed in Libya, the most commonly used diagnostic modalities were bronchoscopic biopsy 46.6%, and computed tomography guided biopsy 17.4%. Only 18 cases were tested for epidermal growth factor receptor sensitizing mutations and anaplastic lymphoma kinase rearrangement fusion. Stage IV was the most common initial stage for NSCLC 60%, malignant mesothelioma 47.1%, and 74.7% of SCLC presented with extensive disease. Only 42.9% of males and 5.3% of female lung cancer patients were smokers. Conclusions: Lung cancer is a major health burden in Libya, and it is increasing in incidence; this epidemiological study tries to put this problem into public health and clinical perspective.

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