BACKGROUND: The aim of the present study was to determine subsites of gastric cancer in East Azerbaijan, Iran-a high incidence region for gastric cancer and Helicobacter pylori infection.
METHODS: Data were collected from 2002 through 2007 from patients who sought treatment for gastrointestinal symptoms or signs at a university clinic and subsequently underwent upper gastrointestinal endoscopy.
RESULTS: Cancer was diagnosed and histologically confirmed in 362 patients (352 adenocarcinomas). The mean age of the patients was 64.57 +/- 11.32 (range, 16-94 years) and the male-to-female ratio was 2.8:1. The gastric cardia was involved in 40.3% of patients with gastric adenocarcinoma, while the gastric fundus was involved in 3.7%, the gastric body in 49.1%, and the gastric antrum in 24.1% of patients. Complete evaluation for metastasis was possible in 144 patients; 61 were free of metastasis, and most of these patients underwent surgical therapy. Cardia involvement was not associated with the sex or age of patients.
CONCLUSIONS: Noncardia gastric cancer is still more frequent in East Azerbaijan, which is likely due to the very high prevalence of infection with Helicobacter pylori. The low rate of cancer involving the fundus is a target for further research on the etiology of gastric cancer.