Background. Adenocarcinoma of the gastric cardia has been be increasing in Connecticut, and the risk factors responsible for the increasing incidence are unknown. This study examined the incidence pattern of adenocarcinoma of the gastric cardia and distal stomach in Connecticut during the past decades and identified components of birth cohort, period, and age as determinants of the observed time trends by regression modeling.
Methods. This study was based on all histologically confirmed incident cases of gastric adenocarcinoma reported to the Connecticut Tumor Registry between 1955 and 1989. Stomach cancers were grouped into cancers of the gastric cardia, distal stomach, or unknown/unspecified subsite. Age-adjusted incidence rates were calculated by the direct method standardized to the 1970 United States population. A regression model was used to identify birth cohort, period, and age as determinants of the observed time trends.
Results. The results indicated that the incidence rate of adenocarcinoma of the cardia is increasing, particularly in white males, whereas adenocarcinoma of the distal stomach is now decreasing in both sexes in Connecticut. Regression modeling suggests that the increase of adenocarcinoma of the cardia may be explained partly by a birth cohort phenomenon.
Conclusion. There is little information regarding the risk factors that might be responsible for the observed increasing trend for adenocarcinoma of the cardia, although smoking, alcohol intake, retinol intake, and hiatal hernia have been associated with an increased risk of adenocarcinoma of the cardia or gastric cancer. Considering the different epidemiologic features of adenocarcinoma of the cardia and distal stomach, future analytic studies should separate cancer of the gastric cardia and cancer of the distal stomach in searching for etiologic factors.