Oral cancer awareness campaign in Northern Germany: first positive trends in incidence and tumour stages

Katrin Hertrampf*, Ron Pritzkuleit, Eva Baumann, Jörg Wiltfang, Hans Jürgen Wenz, Annika Waldmann

*Corresponding author for this work


Purpose: Oral cancer is a still underestimated public health problem. In Germany, until 2007, there was no systematic approach available for the purpose of raising the awareness of the public. From 2007 to 2011, a concept was developed for such an approach, and the campaign was launched in Northern Germany in 2012, and concluded in 2014. This report aims at presenting incidence trends of oral cancer, stratified according to sex, age, and tumour stages, before the introduction of this campaign and upon completion thereof. Methods: The data kept by the Schleswig–Holstein Cancer Registry on incidence rates (ICD-10, C00–C14) focused on oral cancer (C00–C06) and stratified by sex, age-groups and tumour stages, from 2000 to 2006 and from 2007 to 2014. Results: From 2000 to 2014, a total of 6760 cases of oral and pharyngeal cancer (C00–C14) were registered. When data on oral cancer was taken into account, stage I cancers of women in particular, increased over time. Regarding the stages, stage IV was the most frequent and stage I the second most frequent stage for both men and women. Over time, a small shift towards detection of tumours at earlier stages was observed. Conclusion: A slight trend towards a temporary increase in incidence rates, especially among women, was observed. From an epidemiological point of view, this might indicate the initial success of this campaign. The slight trend in favour of stage I tumours could be seen as an initial minor success in terms of the early detection of oral cancer.

Original languageEnglish
JournalJournal of Cancer Research and Clinical Oncology
Issue number10
Pages (from-to)2489-2496
Number of pages8
Publication statusPublished - 01.10.2020

Research Areas and Centers

  • Research Area: Center for Population Medicine and Public Health (ZBV)

DFG Research Classification Scheme

  • 205-14 Haematology, Oncology
  • 205-02 Public Health, Health Services Research and Social Medicine


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