PhD Scientific Days 2022

Budapest, 6-7 July 2022

Temporal and spatial changes in melanoma incidence between 2001 and 2015

Agnes Stier: National Public Health Center, Semmelweis University Doctoral School of Health Sciences
Dr Anna Páldy: National Public Health Center

Text of the abstract

Introduction: The incidence of melanoma has been increasing worldwide since the 1980s despite the concerted global effort to restrict UV-depleting substances from entering the stratosphere. The alarming incidence lies in the multifactorial aetiology of melanoma, including genetic factors, behaviour factors such as sun-seeking behaviour and solarium use, and environmental factors. Other hypotheses also support a link between melanoma development and socioeconomic factors, primarily education and income. The incidence of melanoma is spatially and temporally non-stationary, and the dynamic changes invite spatial analysis expertise in the public health domain.
Aims: The research aims to reveal the temporal changes in melanoma incidence in Hungary and the spatial associations of melanoma and SES factors between 2001 and 2015.
Methods: First, the incidence of melanoma (ICD C43) was obtained from the National Cancer Registry from 2001 to 2015. We calculated standardised incidence rates using the European Standard Population (2012) for 15-64 years and 65 years or older age groups in both genders. Secondly, we analysed the spatial associations of socioeconomic factors and melanoma incidence, relying on the geographically weighted regression method embedded in ArcMap 10.8.1. Selected SES factors were occupational categories, highest achieved educational level, health insurance coverage and annual income (source: Central Statistical Office). The 2001-2015 period was divided into five 3-intervals for the spatial analysis.
Results: Standardised melanoma incidence increased in the studied age groups of men and women. An uneven distribution of melanoma incidence was found, demonstrating “hotspot” areas in Budapest, Southern Great Plain and Balaton region. The incidence correlated with UV exposure and socioeconomic factors, predominantly with the educational level of women. However, dynamic spatial changes were observed in the studied intervals.
Interpretation: Our results show that the temporal changes between 2001 and 2015 reflected the international trend of increasing incidence of melanoma. The uneven geography of melanoma offers opportunities for targeted prevention campaigns.