Background: To examine recent trends in gallbladder cancer (GBC) in the general population in the Western world, cancer registration data on GBC in the Netherlands were analyzed. Methods: Trends in incidence, treatment and survival, according to gender, age and stage of disease, between 1989 and 2008 for 3,917 patients were studied. Rates were age-standardized to the European standard population (European Standardized Rates - ESR). Results: The incidence rate for GBC in the Netherlands decreased rapidly during the period of 1989-2008, except for males younger than 60 years. Overall survival remained stable, short-term (3-month) and long-term (5-year) relative survival among surgically treated patients increased significantly. Treatment patterns for GBC changed. Surgery decreased from 55% in 1989 to 38% in 2008 (p < 0.001). Chemotherapy and/or irradiation increased from 1.0 to 5.8% (p < 0.001). Receiving best supportive care increased from 44% in 1989 to 57% in 2008 (p < 0.001). Conclusion: The incidence rate for GBC in the Netherlands has decreased rapidly. Treatment patterns for GBC have changed and survival among surgically treated patients has increased. Copyright

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Digestive Surgery
Department of Surgery

Witjes, C., van den Akker, S., Visser, O., Karim-Kos, H., de Vries, E., IJzermans, J., … Verhoef, K. (2012). Gallbladder cancer in the Netherlands: Incidence, treatment and survival patterns since 1989. Digestive Surgery, 29(2), 92–98. doi:10.1159/000336217