Disparities in head and neck cancer incidence and trends by race/ethnicity and sex

Angela L. Mazul, Smrithi Chidambaram, Jose P. Zevallos, Sean T. Massa

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Scopus citations


Background: The epidemiology of head and neck cancer (HNC) sites differ substantially. This study compares HNC incidence trends by site and demographic subgroups. Methods: We used the U.S. Cancer Statistics Public Use Database to calculate HNC incidence rates per 100 000. We assessed trends with annual percent change (APC) longitudinally from 2001 to 2017. Results: The oropharyngeal cancer incidence APC decreased from 4.38% (95% CI: 3.6, 5.1) to 2.93% (2.5, 3.3) in 2008 among White males. Oral cavity cancer incidence rose in Other race males (APC 2.5% [1.6, 3.36]) and White females (APC: 0.96% [0.7, 1.2]). Although decreasing (APC: −1.15% [−1.48, −0.83]), laryngeal cancer incidence remained disproportionately high among Black males. Conclusions: Notable incidence trends occurred in non-White groups at non-oropharyngeal sites. With parity of smoking rates by race, differing sexual behaviors, and shifting demographics by race and sex, future studies of HNC trends should consider stratifying analyses to understand health disparities.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)75-84
Number of pages10
JournalHead and Neck
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 2023


  • demographic disparities
  • epidemiology
  • head and neck cancer
  • incidence
  • otolaryngology


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