Cancer incidence statistics

Cases

New cases of cancer, 2014, UK

Common cancers

More than half of new cases of cancer are breast, prostate, lung or bowel cancer, 2014, UK

 

Age

Peak rate of cancer cases, 2012-2014, UK

 

  • There were around 357,000 new cases of cancer in the UK in 2014, that’s 980 cases diagnosed every day.
  • In males, there were around 181,000 cases of cancer diagnosed in the UK in 2014.
  • In females, there were around 176,000 cases of cancer diagnosed in the UK in 2014.
  • Every two minutes someone in the UK is diagnosed with cancer.
  • Since the early 1990s, incidence rates for all cancers combined have increased by more than a tenth (12% increase) in the UK. The increase is larger in females where rates have increased by less than a fifth (16%), than in males where rates have increased by less than a tenth (4%).
  • Over the last decade, incidence rates for all cancers combined have increased by less than a tenth (7%) in the UK, with a larger increase in females (8%, almost a tenth) than in males (3%, less than a twentieth).
  • Almost half of cancers are diagnosed at a late stage in England (2014) and Northern Ireland (2010-2014).
  • Incidence rates for all cancers combined are projected to rise by 2% in the UK between 2014 and 2035, to 742 cases per 100,000 people by 2035.
  • More than two million people in the UK are estimated (in 2008) to be alive having previously been diagnosed with cancer.
  • Incidence rates in the UK are lower than in the European Union in males, but higher in females.
  • Incidence rates in the UK are lower than in the More Developed Regions of the world in males, but higher in females. For both sexes, rates in the UK are higher than in the Less Developed Regions of the world.

See more in-depth cancer incidence statistics for all cancers combined

  • Breast, prostate, lung and bowel cancers together accounted for over half (53%) of all new cancers in the UK in 2014.
  • Thyroid and liver cancers have shown the fastest increases in incidence in both males and females over the past decade in the UK.
  • Incidence of melanoma skin cancer, small intestine cancer, and kidney cancer has also increased markedly in males over the past decade in the UK.
  • Incidence of kidney cancer, melanoma skin cancer, and head and neck cancers has also increased markedly in females over the past decade in the UK.
  • Stomach and bladder cancers have shown the fastest decreases in incidence in both males and females over the past decade in the UK.
  • For lung, bowel, and oesophageal cancers, the incidence trend differs between the sexes.
  • Incidence rates are projected to rise for most types of cancer in the UK between 2014 and 2035.
  • Among cancer types where rates are projected to rise in the UK between 2014 and 2035, the size of the increase ranges from 2% (breast cancer) to 74% (thyroid cancer).
  • Among cancer types where rates are projected to fall in the UK between 2014 and 2035, the size of the decrease ranges from 2% (non-Hodgkin lymphoma) to 53% (mesothelioma).

See more in-depth cancer incidence statistics for common cancers

  • Half (50%) of all cancer cases in the UK each year are diagnosed in people aged 70 and over (2012-2014).
  • Incidence rates for all cancer cases in the UK are highest in people aged 85+ (2012-2014).
  • The most common cancers vary considerably by age group; different cancer types tend to be diagnosed in young people compared with older people.
  • Since the early 1990s, incidence rates for all cancers combined have increased for all the broad age groups in the UK. The increase is largest in people aged 0-24 where rates have increased by a fifth (20%).

See more in-depth cancer incidence statistics by age at diagnosis

  • Cancer is more common in white and black males than in Asian males.
  • Cancer is more common in white females than in Black or Asian females.

See more in-depth cancer incidence statistics by ethnic group

  • Cancer in England is more common in people living in the most deprived areas.
  • There are around 15,000 extra cases of cancer, per year, in England, because of socio-economic variation.

See more in-depth cancer incidence statistics by deprivation gradient

The latest data available for all cancers in the UK are: incidence 2014.

The ICD codes Open a glossary item for all cancers combined are ICD-10 C00-C97 excluding C44 which includes all malignant neoplasms excluding non-melanoma skin cancer (NMSC). NMSC is often excluded from cancer incidence statistics because it is extremely common and registration is known to be incomplete.

ICD codes for each cancer type are detailed within the types of cancer content.

Prevalence statistics were estimated from UK incidence 2008 data.

Deprivation gradient statistics were calculated using England incidence data for three time periods: 1996-2000, 2001-2005 and 2006-2010. The deprivation quintiles were calculated using the Income domain scores from the Index of Multiple Deprivation (IMD) from the following years: 2004, 2007 and 2010. Full details on the data and methodology can be found in the Cancer by Deprivation in England NCIN report.

Local Cancer Statistics

Find and compare local statistics and information in the UK by healthboard, Local Authority or postcode.

Cancer stats explained

See information and explanations on terminology used for statistics and reporting of cancer, and the methods used to calculate some of our statistics.

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Acknowledgements

We would like to acknowledge the essential work of the cancer registries in the United Kingdom and Ireland Association of Cancer Registries, without which there would be no data.

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