Critical Assessment of Three Decades of Breast Cancer Research in Yemen: Systematic Review
Keywords:Breast cancer, Yemen, review, screening, diagnosis, treatment, Sana’a, Aden
Objective: The aim of this review is to critically assess three decades (1989 to 2019) of breast cancer
research in Yemen and to identify the gaps in, and need for, breast cancer research in Yemen.
Methodology: A search was performed in Web of Science, EMBASE, PubMed, Google Scholar and Ovid
to identify articles on breast cancer research in Yemen that were published in the last three decades. The
articles were selected and reviewed by experts in this field, based on clinical relevance and future research
Results: This review comprised 19,031 participants, extracted from 27 articles that were included and
analyzed. Breast cancer patients in Yemen were commonly diagnosed at an early age of 50 years or younger.
Overall, awareness of breast cancer among Yemeni women was very poor. Some studies reported that a low
rate of only 11%-17.4% of Yemeni women practiced breast screen examination. Only 1.6% of the Yemeni
women had been screened by a mammogram test. The highest performed surgery was a modified radical
mastectomy (N=211). The highest cases of breast cancer were reported in Hadramout (N=956) and the most
common histological subtype was invasive ductal carcinoma (N=2695).
Conclusions: Yemen is characterised by three decades of scattered, fragmented and poor quality breast
cancer research. Therefore, there is a need to establish a breast cancer research center in Yemen to research
all aspects of breast cancer in Yemen, and to build bridges for collaborations in breast cancer research
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