Colorectal cancer (CRC) is a major public health problem, and its incidence is rising in developing countries. However, studies characterizing CRC clinicopathological features in cases from developing countries are still lacking. The goal of this study was to evaluate clinicopathological and demographic features in one of the largest CRC studies in Latin America.
The study involved over 1525 CRC cases recruited in a multicenter study in Colombia between 2005 and 2014 as part of ongoing genetic and epidemiological studies. We gathered clinicopathological data such as age at diagnosis, sex, body mass index, tobacco and alcohol consumption, family history of cancer, and tumor features including location, histological type, and stage. Statistical analyses were performed to test the association between age of onset, sex, and clinical manifestations.
The average age at CRC diagnosis was 57.4 years, with 26.5% of cases having early-onset CRC (diagnosed by age 50 years). Most cases were women (53.2%; P = 0.009), 49.2% were overweight or obese, 49.1% were regular alcohol drinkers, 52% were smokers/former smokers, and 12.2% reported relatives with cancer. Most tumors in the study were located in the rectum (42.7%), were adenocarcinomas (91.5%), and had advanced stage (T3–T4, 79.8%). Comparisons by sex found that male cases were more likely to be obese (36.5% vs 31.1%; P = 0.001), less likely to have a family history of cancer (9.7% vs 15.3%; P = 0.016), and more likely to have advanced-stage tumors (83.9% vs 76.1%; P = 0.036). Comparisons by age of onset found that early-onset cases were more likely to be women (59.3% vs 51.0%; P = 0.005) and report a family history of cancer (17.4% vs 10.2%; P = 0.001).
To our knowledge, our study is the largest report of clinicopathological characterization of Hispanic CRC cases, and we suggest that further studies are needed to understand CRC etiology in diverse Hispanic populations.