Racial Disparities and Sociodemographic Differences in Incidence and Survival Among Pediatric Patients in the United States With Primary Liver Cancer: A Surveillance, Epidemiology, and End Results (SEER) Population Study

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Abstract

Background:

Primary liver cancer, including Hepatoblastoma (HB) and hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC), in pediatric populations is often fatal. The outcomes are poor despite universal health care access in pediatric patients.

Aim:

We investigated the sociodemographic factors affecting outcomes in pediatric patients with primary liver cancer.

Materials and Methods:

This is a large population database study of Surveillance, Epidemiology, and End Results cancer registry data from 1973 to 2011. HB and HCC were analyzed regarding age, sex, race, geographic area, and treatment-related information including survival.

Results:

In total, 998 patients, the median age at time of diagnosis was 1 year for HB [0-19; 95% confidence interval (CI), 1.5-1.9] and 14 years for HCC (0-19; 95% CI, 12.1-13.3) (P<0.001). Overall Survival (OS) in HB was 374 months (25% failures 19) versus HCC 21 months (25% failures 5; P<0.0001). In HCC, the fibrolamellar subgroup OS was 41 months (32-.) versus 16 months (11-21) in all others [hazard ratio (HR) 2.0; P=0.005]. Diagnosis between 2000 and 2011 (HB: 25% failures not reached; HCC: 38) versus diagnosis 1973 to 1999 (HB: 374; HCC: 12) had different survival (P=0.01; HR 1.9). For HB, OS in patients with age of diagnosis under 2, 25% failures was not reached versus 374 months over the age of 2 (HR 1.7; P<0.0007). African American children with HB had OS of 67 (17-.) versus all others (25% failures 21) and 48% of African American children were diagnosed after the age of 2 versus 34% of whites (HR 1.9; P=0.01).

Conclusions:

Later diagnosis and decreased survival in African American children with HB warrants further research.

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