Clinical Research Papers:
Potential delay in the diagnosis of vulvar cancer and associated risk factors in women treated in German gynecological practices
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Jennifer Muigai1, Louis Jacob2, Konstantinos Dinas3, Karel Kostev1,4 and Matthias Kalder1
1Department of Gynecology and Obstetrics, Philipps-University Marburg, Marburg, Germany
2Faculty of Medicine, University of Paris 5, Paris, France
3Aristotle University of Thessaloniki, Faculty of Medicine, Thessaloníki, Greece
4Epidemiology, QuintilesIMS, Frankfurt am Main, Germany
Karel Kostev, email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Keywords: vulvar cancer; delay; risk factors; vulva infection; vulva inflammation
Received: August 15, 2017 Accepted: November 05, 2017 Published: January 03, 2018
The goal of this study was to estimate a potential delay in the diagnosis of vulvar cancer and identify associated risk factors in women treated in gynecological practices in Germany. The current study sample included 1,652 women from 218 gynecological practices who received an initial diagnosis of vulvar cancer (ICD 10: C51) between January 2000 and December 2015 (index date). After applying several exclusion criteria, 505 non-cancer controls were matched (1:1) to 505 vulvar cancer cases based on age, health insurance status, and index date. The primary outcome was the delay in vulvar cancer diagnosis in women who had received an initial diagnosis of diseases of Bartholin's gland, inflammation of vagina and vulva, or other specified noninflammatory disorders of vulva, including atrophy, hypertrophy, and cyst. A logistic regression model was used to estimate the association between vulvar cancer and pre-defined diagnoses. The mean age was 60.8 years (SD = 15.6 years), and 4.8% of women had private health insurance coverage. Inflammation of vagina and vulva was diagnosed 328 days (SD = 95 days) prior to the detection of vulvar cancer. This delay was 186 days (SD = 196 days) in patients affected by diseases of Bartholin’s gland and 300 days (SD = 116 days) in those with other specified noninflammatory disorders of vulva including atrophy, hypertrophy, and cyst. The risk of vulvar cancer was positively associated with inflammation of vagina and vulva (OR = 2.28) and other specified noninflammatory disorders of vulva (OR = 5.39). The mean potential delay of vulvar cancer diagnosis ranged from 186 to 328 days.
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