(ChemotherapyAdvisor) – Conservative estimates of the number of new metastatic brain tumors that would occur over the remaining lifetime of individuals who received a diagnosis of cancer in 2007 is “almost 70,000,” a study in Neuro-Oncology reported online August 16.

“That is, 6% of newly diagnosed cases of cancer during 2007 would be expected to develop brain metastasis as a progression of their original cancer diagnosis; the most frequent sites for metastases being lung and bronchus and breast cancers,” the investigators stated.

Noting that “few population estimates of brain metastasis in the United States are available” and that “such estimates have value in planning for patient care and in working toward measures to prevent or decrease the likelihood of metastatic disease,” they applied incidence proportions for primary cancer sites known to develop brain metastasis—lung, renal, breast, melanoma, and colorectal—to cancer incidence data from Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and Surveillance Epidemiology and End Results Web sites.

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White individuals, female individuals, and older age groups were expected to have higher estimated numbers of brain metastasis, they found.

“The current estimates provide a baseline from which to begin to understand the pattern of brain tumor metastasis in the United States,” the authors concluded. “Over time, repeated estimates using this method will reflect the changing patterns in the occurrence of primary cancers, the impact of specific diagnosis and associated treatments, site-specific information on duration from diagnosis to onset of metastatic disease, and the population access to those treatments.”