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Cancer Epidemiology

A review of the literature reports cases of leukemia and solid tumors in DBA patients. The DBAR analyzed the cancer incidence in DBA from the patients enrolled in the Registry.


Of 608 patients reviewed, 22 patients had cancer or myelodysplastic syndrome (a pre-leukemia state).  The actuarial risk of developing cancer is 22% by age 46 years.


Many types of solid tumors were noted in DBA patients, including:


  • colon carcinoma

  • osteogenic sarcoma (a rare bone tumor)

  • female genital cancers

  • breast cancer

  • non-Hodgkins lymphoma

  • soft tissue sarcoma

  • melanoma

One important feature of DBA-associated cancers is that they present at a younger age than those cancers are usually found. The patients also do not tolerate the chemotherapy as well as others, and often require more transfusions and supportive care. Careful analysis of these patients and their families is essential to determining a cancer surveillance program.

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