Cancer Causes & Control

, Volume 5, Issue 5, pp 414–421

Cancer incidence in migrants to New South Wales (Australia) from the Middle East, 1972–91

  • Margaret McCredie
  • Marylon Coates
  • Andrew Grulich
Research Papers

DOI: 10.1007/BF01694755

Cite this article as:
McCredie, M., Coates, M. & Grulich, A. Cancer Causes Control (1994) 5: 414. doi:10.1007/BF01694755


The incidence of cancer in migrants to New South Wales (NSW) from Cyprus, Egypt, Iran, Iraq, Israel, Lebanon, Syria, and Turkey has been compared with that in the Australian-born population using data from the NSW Central Cancer Registry for 1972–91. Age-standardized incidence rates showed overall cancer incidence to be less common in migrants from each Middle Eastern country than in the Australian-born. There was a clear pattern of generally low rates for cancers of the mouth and pharynx, esophagus, colon and rectum, lung (men only), ovary, prostate and testis, and melanoma. Cancers which tended to be more common in migrants were nasopharynx, stomach (women only), liver (men only), gallbladder (chiefly in women), bladder (men only), and thyroid. Breast cancer did not show a uniform pattern among migrant groups, rates being high in the Egyptian-born but low in Lebanese-born women. The overall low incidence of cancers related to tobacco and alcohol, and to a ‘high fat, low fiber’ diet, emphasizes the potential role of preventable lifestyle factors in the burden of cancer in Australia.

Key words

Australia cancer incidence Middle East migrant Western Asia 

Copyright information

© Rapid Communications of Oxford Ltd 1994

Authors and Affiliations

  • Margaret McCredie
    • 1
  • Marylon Coates
    • 2
  • Andrew Grulich
    • 1
  1. 1.Cancer Epidemiology Research UnitNSW Cancer CouncilKings CrossAustralia
  2. 2.NSW Central Cancer RegistryKings CrossAustralia

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