Hematologic Malignancies Represent a Large Portion of Cancers Among Adolescents and Young Adults

Hematologic malignancies represent a significant portion of cancers among adolescents and young adults (AYAs), especially in Asia, according to the findings of a study presented as part of the 2020 ASCO Virtual Scientific Program.

Researchers collated data on all patients with cancer aged 16 to 39 years who were examined at the National Cancer Center Singapore between January 2015 and December 2019. After excluding all but those with hematologic malignancies, a total of 319 patients (52% male) were included in this analysis.

The findings showed that most patients (53.6%) presented with malignancies between 30 and 39 years old. There were 54 (2.1%) leukemias and 265 (83.1%) lymphomas. Of those with leukemia, 46 (85.2%) had acute leukemia and nine (14.8%) had chronic leukemias. Among patients with lymphoma, there 194 (73.2%) had non-Hodgkin lymphoma and 69 (26.0%) had Hodgkin lymphoma. There were 149 patients (46.7%) with B-cell lymphomas and 38 (11.9%) T-cell lymphoma. The most common B-cell lymphoma was diffuse large B-cell lymphoma (n=128; 85.9%), and the most common T-cell lymphoma was peripheral T-cell lymphoma (n=28; 73.7%).

The researchers concluded that although hematologic cancers comprise a large portion of malignancies among AYA, “little information is available with regard to their clinico-pathological characteristics, especially in Asia. Work is underway to further elucidate these differences so that we can better their outcomes.”

Ling Poon E, et al. Hematological Malignancies in the Adolescent and Young Adult (AYA) Population in Singapore. Presented at the 2020 ASCO Virtual Scientific Program; May 29-31, 2020.