New York State Cancer Registration Project

Brenda Edwards, Ph.D.
National Cancer Institute, Bethesda, Md.

Dr. Brenda Edwards, of the National Cancer Institute (NCI), worked with the New York State Department of Health and Long Island cancer registrars to review state cancer registration and reporting procedures for breast cancer. She conducted a study of medical records of breast cancer cases on Long Island, and looked at the accuracy of reported stage of diagnosis for female residents using the New York Cancer Registry and a report from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) on data from 1978-1982, which indicated a high percentage (18 percent) of distant disease for Long Island. A 10 percent oversample was used to obtain 100 cases per year per county to reach a total of 600 cases. For 1989-1991 in Long Island, the stage distribution showed a smaller percentage of metastatic disease (7 percent) than in the older reported data (18 percent for 1978-1982). When comparing data reported to New York state to U.S. data, overall agreement was good (73 percent). However, misclassification was found at all stages and in both directions (i.e., upstaging and downstaging). The final adjusted stage distribution for 1989 and 1991 showed there was somewhat more regional disease in Long Island than was found in national data among white women.

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