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Leukaemia Key Facts

Leukaemia Stats DoughnutKey messages on incidence, survival, mortality, risk factors (causes) and a summary table of the statistics for leukaemia (all subtypes combined) are given here.

More comprehensive information and statistics for leukaemia is here: incidence, survival, mortality.

The latest statistics available for leukaemia are; incidence 2010, mortality 2011, and survival 2005-2009. Please note that all statistics on this page are for all subtypes of leukaemia combined. Source years are specified in the statistics table. Find out why these are the latest statistics available.

About leukaemia

  • Leukaemia is a cancer of the white blood cells and bone marrow.
  • There are four main subtypes of leukaemia: acute myeloid leukaemia (AML), acute lymphoblastic leukaemia (ALL), chronic myeloid leukaemia (CML) and chronic lymphocytic leukaemia (CLL).
  • Leukaemia subtypes vary substantially in their cellular origin and clinical behaviour. Statistics for all leukaemia subtypes combined should be interpreted with this diversity in mind.

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section updated 31/01/12

How common is leukaemia (all subtypes combined)?

Read more in-depth leukaemia incidence statistics.

section reviewed 14/01/13
section updated 14/01/13

How many people survive leukaemia (all subtypes combined)?

Read more in-depth leukaemia survival statistics.

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section updated 03/07/12

How many people die from leukaemia (all subtypes combined)?

Read more in-depth leukaemia mortality statistics.

section reviewed 02/01/14
section updated 02/01/14

What are the main causes of leukaemia?

  • Radiation exposure increases the risk of leukaemia, and around 9% of cases in the UK are linked to this factor.
  • Smoking increases the risk of myeloid leukaemia, and causes around 6% of all leukaemia cases in the UK.
  • Occupational exposure to the chemicals benzene and formaldehyde and working in the rubber production industry increases the risk of developing leukaemia.
  • Radiation therapy and some types of chemotherapy used in cancer treatment can increase the risk of developing leukaemia.
  • Children with Down’s Syndrome are at greater risk of developing leukaemia.

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section updated 03/07/12


Leukaemia (all subtypes combined) statistics table

LEUKAEMIA STATISTICS Males Females Persons Country Year3
Number of new cases per year 4,816 3,441 8,257 UK 2010
Incidence rate per 100,000 population1 13.0 7.8 10.2
Number of deaths per year 2,609 1,994 4,603 UK 2011
Mortality rate per 100,000 population1 6.3 3.7 4.9
One-year survival rate2 64.5% 63.5% 64.1% England 2005-2009
Five-year survival rate2 44.0% 44.4% 44.3%
Ten-year survival rate2 32.9% 33.6% 33.2% England & Wales 2007

1. European age-standardised    2. Adults diagnosed    3. Latest statistics available

More detailed leukaemia statistics can be found using these links: incidence, survival, mortality.

section reviewed 02/01/14
section updated 02/01/14

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Updated: 2 January 2014