Cancer encompasses more than 100 diseases that increase in frequency in older populations. Causal agents include hereditary factors, as well as the exposure to environmental elements. Socio-demographic profile, as a determinant of exposure to different environmental factors, also affects cancer incidence. In Brazil, between 2010 and 2011, 489.270 new cases of cancer were recorded. In face of these facts, the present survey aimed at characterizing the demographic profile as well as the professional activities of patients with a cancer diagnostic who received care from an out-patient clinic in the city of Guarapuava, state of Parana, Brazil. To this end, 460 medical charts were analyzed from the years 2010 and 2011. The most common types of cancer observed were non-melanoma skin cancer (156 cases, 34%), breast (18.3%), prostate (17.5%), colon and rectum (12.7%), cervical (8%), lungs (5%) and stomach (2.3%). In general, the more relevant risk factors were: being white and female, having more than 60 years of age and exposure to pesticides, sun and tobacco. The average age of cancer patients was above 60, highlighting the continued need for early prevention and diagnostic programs in a country with ageing population.
Key words: Neoplasia, risk factor, demographic survey, epidemiology.
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