Myeloma statistics

Cases

New cases of myeloma, 2013, UK

Deaths

Deaths from myeloma, 2014, UK

Survival

Survive myeloma for 10 or more years, 2010-11, England and Wales

Prevention

Preventable cases of myeloma, UK

  • There were around 5,500 new cases of myeloma in the UK in 2013, that’s 15 cases diagnosed every day.
  • Myeloma is the 17th most common cancer in the UK (2013).
  • Myeloma accounts for 2% of all new cases in the UK (2013).
  • In males in the UK, myeloma is the 15th most common cancer, with around 3,100 cases diagnosed in 2013.
  • In females in the UK, myeloma is the 18th most common cancer, with around 2,400 cases diagnosed in 2013.
  • Around 6 in 10 (59%) myeloma cases in the UK each year are diagnosed in people aged 70 and over (2011-2013).
  • Since the late 1970s, myeloma incidence rates have increased by two-thirds (66%) in Great Britain. The increase is larger in males where rates have increased by around two-thirds (67%), than in females where rates have increased by almost three-fifths (57%).
  • Over the last decade, myeloma incidence rates have increased by more than a tenth (14%) in the UK, with similar increases in males (13%) and females (13%).
  • 1 in 115 men and 1 in 155 women will be diagnosed with myeloma during their lifetime.
  • Myeloma in England is not associated with deprivation.
  • Myeloma is more common in Black people than in White and Asian people.
  • In the UK around 12,500 people were still alive at the end of 2006, up to ten years after being diagnosed with myeloma.
  • Myeloma is preceded by an asymptomatic condition Monoclonal Gammopathy of Undetermined Significance (MGUS), although most people with MGUS do not progress to myeloma. Like myeloma, MGUS is more common in older people, men, and black people.
  • In Europe, around 39,000 new cases of myeloma were estimated to have been diagnosed in 2012. The UK incidence rate is ninth highest in Europe for males and eight highest for females.
  • Worldwide, more than 114,000 new cases of myeloma were diagnosed in 2012, with incidence rates varying across the world.

See more in-depth myeloma incidence statistics

  • There were around 2,900 myeloma deaths in the UK in 2014, that’s around 8 deaths every day.
  • Myeloma is the 15th most common cause of cancer death in the UK (2014).
  • Myeloma accounts for 2% of all cancer deaths in the UK (2014).
  • In males in the UK, myeloma is the 15th most common cause of cancer death, with around 1,600 deaths in 2014.
  • In females in the UK, myeloma is the 15th most common cause of cancer death, with around 1,300 deaths in 2014.
  • Around 6 in 10 (59%) myeloma deaths in the UK each year are in people aged 75 and over (2012-2014).
  • Mortality rates for myeloma in the UK are highest in people aged 85+ (2012-2014).
  • Since the early 1970s, myeloma mortality rates have increased by almost three-fifths (56%) in the UK. The increase is larger in males (65%) than in females (44%).
  • Over the last decade, myeloma mortality rates have remained stable in the UK in males and females combined, however this includes stable rates in males and a decrease (6%) in females.
  • Myeloma in England is not associated with deprivation.
  • In Europe, around 24,300 people were estimated to have died from myeloma in 2012. The UK mortality rate is seventh highest in Europe for males and tenth highest for females.
  • Worldwide, around 80,000 people were estimated to have died from myeloma in 2012, with mortality rates varying across the world.

See more in-depth myeloma mortality statistics

  • A third (33%) of people diagnosed with myeloma in England and Wales survive their disease for ten years or more (2010-11).
  • Almost half (47%) of people diagnosed with myeloma in England and Wales survive their disease for five years or more (2010-11).
  • More than three-quarters (77%) of people diagnosed with myeloma in England and Wales survive their disease for one year or more (2010-11).
  • Myeloma survival is higher in men than women.
  • Around a quarter of people in England diagnosed with myeloma aged 15-49 survive their disease for five years or more, compared with a quarter of people diagnosed aged 80 and over (2009-2013).
  • Myeloma survival is improving and has quadrupled in the last 40 years in the UK.
  • In the 1970s, around 5 in 100 people diagnosed with myeloma survived their disease beyond ten years, now it's a third.

See more in-depth myeloma survival statistics

  • A person’s risk of developing cancer depends on many factors, including age, genetics, and exposure to risk factors (including some potentially avoidable lifestyle factors).
  • Less than 1% of myeloma cases each year in the UK are linked to major lifestyle and other risk factors.
  • Evidence on myeloma risk factors is limited, mainly because this cancer is relatively rare.
  • Certain occupational exposures may relate to higher myeloma risk but evidence is unclear; these would account for less than 1% of myeloma cases in the UK.
  • Ionising radiation, problems with the immune system, and overweight and obesity may relate to higher myeloma risk, but evidence is unclear.

See more in-depth myeloma risk factors

  • 'GP referral' is the most common route to diagnosing myeloma.
  • ‘Two-week wait’ and ’31-day wait’ standards are met by all countries, and ‘62-day wait’ is not met by any country for haematological cancers.
  • Around 7 in 10 patients with myeloma are treated with chemotherapy.
  • Around a third of patients had a ‘very good’ or ‘excellent’ patient experience.
  • Around a third of patients are given the name of their Clinical Nurse Specialist.

See more in-depth myeloma diagnosis and treatment statistics

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The latest statistics available for myeloma in the UK are; incidence 2013, mortality 2014 and survival 2010-2011 (all ages combined) and 2009-2013 (by age).

The ICD code Open a glossary item for myeloma (sometimes called multiple  myeloma) is ICD-10 C90.

European Age-Standardised Rates were calculated using the 1976 European Standard Population (ESP) unless otherwise stated as calculated with ESP2013. ASRs calculated with ESP2013 are not comparable with ASRs calculated with ESP1976.

Lifetime risk estimates were calculated using incidence, mortality, population and all-cause mortality data for 2012.

Incidence data on the myeloma precursor condition monoclonal gammopathy of undetermined significance (MGUS) are also presented.

Survival statistics give an overall picture of survival and (unless otherwise stated) include all adults (15-99) diagnosed, at all ages, stages Open a glossary item and co-morbidities Open a glossary item. The survival time experienced by an individual patient may be much higher or lower, depending on specific patient and tumour characteristics. If you are a patient, please see our patient information.

Meta-analyses Open a glossary item and systematic reviews Open a glossary item are cited where available, as they provide the best overview of all available research and most take study quality into account. Individual case-control and cohort studies Open a glossary item are reported where such aggregated data are lacking.

Overall, the evidence on myeloma risk factors is limited, mainly because of the relative rarity of this cancer type.

Routes to diagnosis statistics were calculated from cases of cancer registered in England which were diagnosed in 2012-2013.

Cancer waiting times statistics are for patients who entered the health care system within financial year 2014-15. Myeloma is part of the group 'Haematological cancers' for cancer waiting times data. Codes vary per country but broadly include: Hodgkin lymphoma, follicular and non-follicular lymphoma, mature T/NK-cell lymphoma, other and unspecified types of NHL, other and unspecified types of T/NK-cell lymphoma, malignant immunoproliferative diseases, myeloma, lymphoid, myeloid and monocytic leukaemia, some other leukaemia of specific or unspecified cell type, and other and unspecified malignant neoplasms of lymphoid, haematopoietic and related tissue.

Patient Experience data is for adult patients in England with a primary diagnosis of cancer, who were in active treatment between September and November 2013 and who completed a survey in 2014.

Deprivation gradient statistics were calculated using incidence data for three time periods: 1996-2000, 2001-2005 and 2006-2010 and for mortality for two time periods: 2002-2006 and 2007-2011. The 1997-2001 mortality data were only used for the all cancers combined group as this time period includes the change in coding from ICD-9 to ICD-10. 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.

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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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