Incidence patterns, care continuum and impact of treatment on survival among women with breast cancer in Ghana and the United States

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Incidence patterns, care continuum and impact of treatment on survival among women with breast cancer in Ghana and the United States


JournalUniversity of Minnesota Digital Conservancy
Article typeThesis
Publication date – Aug – 2021
Authors – Mburu Eddah
KeywordsBreast Cancer, Incidence, Patterns, Sub-Saharan Africa, Survival
Open access – Yes
SpecialityGeneral surgery, Surgical oncology
World region Northern America, Western Africa
Country: Ghana, United States of America
Language – English
Submitted to the One Surgery Index on August 31, 2021 at 5:44 am
Abstract:

Breast cancer is the most commonly diagnosed cancer among women worldwide. Of the five breast cancer subtypes, triple negative breast cancer (TNBC) is the most aggressive subtype. Black women in the US and Ghana are more likely to be diagnosed with TNBC, at young ages and advanced stages. Combining information from Ghana and the US, this project identified the breast cancer care continuum in Ghana, examined the breast cancer incidence patterns in Ghana and the US and assessed the optimal surgical treatment for TNBC. In the first manuscript, we examined how women in Ghana navigate the healthcare system and factors that influence their decisions and ability to seek and access breast cancer care. We interviewed thirty-one women diagnosed with breast cancer in Kumasi, Ghana. Based on the findings from the interviews, we presented a framework showing specific steps in the pathways and how women transition from one step to another. In the second manuscript, we assessed factors explaining the younger age at breast cancer diagnosis among Ghanaian women compared to women in the US. To achieve these aims we analyzed breast cancer data from the Kumasi Cancer Registry, the only population-based cancer registry in Ghana, and compared it to the US Surveillance, Epidemiology and End Results (SEER) data. Population age structure, screening and cohort effects explain the younger age at breast cancer diagnosis among women in Ghana In the third manuscript, we examined whether the poor prognosis of TNBC warrants a more aggressive surgical approach and whether there is value in expanded use of radiation therapy among women with TNBC who receive mastectomy. We found that breast conserving surgery followed by radiotherapy is an effective treatment for women with early-stage TNBC. Findings from this dissertation are timely due to the rapidly rising burden of breast cancer in sub-Saharan Africa and persistent disparities in the US.

OSI Number – 21232

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