Oesophageal cancer incidence statistics

Cases

New cases of oesophageal cancer, 2013, UK

 

Proportion of all cases

Percentage oesophageal cancer is of total cancer cases, 2013, UK

 

Age

Age that almost 6 in 10 of oesophageal cancer cases are diagnosed, 2011-2013, UK

 

Trend since 1970s

Oesophageal cancer incidence rates have increased since the late 1970s, GB

 

Oesophageal cancer is the 13th most common cancer in the UK (2013), accounting for 2% of all new cases. In males it is the eighth most common cancer (3% of male total), whilst it is the 13th most common in females (2%).[1-4]

In 2013, there were 8,784 new cases of oesophageal cancer in the UK: 5,852 (67%) in males and 2,932 (33%) in females, giving a male:female ratio of around 20:10.[1-4] The crude incidence rate Open a glossary item shows that there are 19 new oesophageal cancer cases for every 100,000 males in the UK, and 9 for every 100,000 females.

The European age-standardised Open a glossary item rates (AS rates) are significantly higher in Scotland compared with England, Wales and Northern Ireland for both sexes.[1-4] The rates do not differ significantly between the other constituent countries of the UK.

Oesophageal Cancer (C15), Number of New Cases, Crude and European Age-Standardised (AS) Incidence Rates per 100,000 Population, UK, 2013

England Wales Scotland Northern Ireland UK
Male Cases 4,871 275 570 136 5,852
Crude Rate 18.4 18.1 22.0 15.2 18.6
AS Rate 22.2 19.9 25.7 19.5 22.3
AS Rate - 95% LCL 21.6 17.5 23.6 16.2 21.7
AS Rate - 95% UCL 22.8 22.2 27.8 22.7 22.9
Female Cases 2,378 141 348 65 2,932
Crude Rate 8.7 9.0 12.7 7.0 9.0
AS Rate 8.9 8.5 12.5 7.9 9.2
AS Rate - 95% LCL 8.6 7.1 11.2 5.9 8.9
AS Rate - 95% UCL 9.3 9.9 13.8 9.8 9.5
Persons Cases 7,249 416 918 201 8,784
Crude Rate 13.5 13.5 17.2 11.0 13.7
AS Rate 15.0 13.7 18.5 13.4 15.2
AS Rate - 95% LCL 14.7 12.3 17.3 11.5 14.9
AS Rate - 95% UCL 15.4 15.0 19.7 15.2 15.5

95% LCL and 95% UCL are the lower and upper  confidence limits Open a glossary item around the age-standardised rate Open a glossary item

ASR calculated with ESP2013. Not comparable with ASRs calculated with ESP1976.

Oesophageal cancer incidence rates across the former cancer networks throughout the UK vary significantly between cancer networks, with some of the highest rates in parts of Scotland and North West England, and the lowest in the South and East of England and areas of London.[5,6]

References

  1. Data were provided by the Office for National Statistics on request, July 2015. Similar data can be found here: http://www.ons.gov.uk/ons/rel/vsob1/cancer-statistics-registrations--england--series-mb1-/index.html.
  2. Data were provided by ISD Scotland on request, April 2015. Similar data can be found here: http://www.isdscotland.org/Health-Topics/Cancer/Publications/index.asp.
  3. Data were provided by the Welsh Cancer Intelligence and Surveillance Unit on request, February 2015. Similar data can be found here: http://www.wales.nhs.uk/sites3/page.cfm?orgid=242&pid=59080.
  4. Data were provided by the Northern Ireland Cancer Registry on request, March 2015. Similar data can be found here: http://www.qub.ac.uk/research-centres/nicr/.
  5. National Cancer Intelligence Network (NCIN). Cancer Incidence and Mortality by Cancer Network, UK, 2005. London: NCIN; 2008.
  6. National Cancer Intelligence Network (NCIN). Cancer e-Atlas. Accessed January 2014.
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Oesophageal cancer incidence is strongly related to age, with the highest incidence rates being in older men and women. In the UK in 2011-2013, on average each year almost 6 in 10 (57%) cases were diagnosed in people aged 70 and over.[1-4

Age-specific incidence rates rise sharply from around age 45-49 years, with the highest rates in the 90+ age group. Incidence rates are higher for males than females from age 30-34, with no significant differences at younger ages. This gap is widest at the ages of 40-44, when the male:female ratio of age-specific incidence rates (to account for the different proportions of males to females in each age group) is around 36:10.[1-4]

Oesophageal Cancer (C15), Average Number of New Cases per Year and Age-Specific Incidence Rates, UK, 2011-2013

References

  1. Data were provided by the Office for National Statistics on request, July 2015. Similar data can be found here: http://www.ons.gov.uk/ons/rel/vsob1/cancer-statistics-registrations--england--series-mb1-/index.html.
  2. Data were provided by ISD Scotland on request, April 2015. Similar data can be found here: http://www.isdscotland.org/Health-Topics/Cancer/Publications/index.asp.
  3. Data were provided by the Welsh Cancer Intelligence and Surveillance Unit on request, February 2015. Similar data can be found here: http://www.wales.nhs.uk/sites3/page.cfm?orgid=242&pid=59080.
  4. Data were provided by the Northern Ireland Cancer Registry on request, March 2015. Similar data can be found here: http://www.qub.ac.uk/research-centres/nicr/.
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Oesophageal cancer incidence rates have increased by 43% in Great Britain since the late 1970s.[1-3] This includes a larger overall increase for males than for females, and for females an increase followed by a decrease since the late 1990s.

For males, European age-standardised (AS) Open a glossary item incidence rates increased by 56% between 1979-1981 and 2011-2013. The rise is smaller for females, with rates increasing by 13% in this period. This includes an increase of 26% between 1979-1981 and 1999-2001, and subsequent fall of 10%.

Oesophageal Cancer (C15), European Age-Standardised Incidence Rates, Great Britain, 1979-2013

ASR calculated with ESP2013. Not comparable with ASRs calculated with ESP1976.

Over the last decade in the UK (between 2002-2004 and 2011-2013), oesophageal cancer AS incidence rates have remained stable for males and females combined, though this includes a 5% decrease for females and stable rates for males.[1-4]

Oesophageal Cancer (C15), European Age-Standardised Incidence Rates, UK, 1993-2013

ASR calculated with ESP2013. Not comparable with ASRs calculated with ESP1976.

Oesophageal cancer incidence trends probably reflect changing prevalence of risk factors, with recent incidence trends influenced by risk factor prevalence in years past.

Oesophageal cancer incidence rates in Great Britain have increased overall for all of the broad age groups in males since the late 1970s.[1-3] The largest increases have been in the 25-49, 50-59 and 60-69 age groups, with European AS incidence rates increasing by 58%, 62% and 64%, respectively, between 1979-1981 and 2011-2013. For males aged 70-79 and 80+, rates increased between the late 1970s and early 2000s, but have remained stable since then.

Oesophageal Cancer (C15), European Age-Standardised Incidence Rates, Males by Age, Great Britain, 1979-2013

ASR calculated with ESP2013. Not comparable with ASRs calculated with ESP1976.

Oesophageal cancer incidence rates in Great Britain have remained stable for most of the broad age groups in females since the late 1970s, though in most age groups this includes an increase until the late 1990s, followed by a decrease or stability.[1-3] In females aged 70-79, European AS incidence rates peaked in 1998-2000 (increase of 40% between 1979-1981 and 1998-2000) and have since fallen by 14%. For females in the 80+ age group, rates peaked in 1999-2001, having increased by 30% from 1979-1981, and have since fallen by 15%. In females aged 25-49, 50-59 and 60-69, rates have remained stable overall (though in the 60-69 age group this includes an increase followed by stability).

Oesophageal Cancer (C15), European Age-Standardised Incidence Rates, Females by Age, Great Britain, 1979-2013

ASR calculated with ESP2013. Not comparable with ASRs calculated with ESP1976.

References

  1. Data were provided by the Office for National Statistics on request, July 2015. Similar data can be found here: http://www.ons.gov.uk/ons/rel/vsob1/cancer-statistics-registrations--england--series-mb1-/index.html.
  2. Data were provided by ISD Scotland on request, April 2015. Similar data can be found here: http://www.isdscotland.org/Health-Topics/Cancer/Publications/index.asp.
  3. Data were provided by the Welsh Cancer Intelligence and Surveillance Unit on request, February 2015. Similar data can be found here:http://www.wales.nhs.uk/sites3/page.cfm?orgid=242&pid=59080.
  4. Data were provided by the Northern Ireland Cancer Registry on request, March 2015. Similar data can be found here: http://www.qub.ac.uk/research-centres/nicr/.
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The lifetime risk of developing oesophageal cancer is 1 in 55 for men and around 1 in 115 for women, in 2012 in the UK.[1]

The lifetime risk for oesophageal cancer has been calculated on the assumption that the possibility of having more than one diagnosis of oesophageal cancer over the course of a lifetime is very low (‘Current Probability’ method).[2]

References

  1. Lifetime risk estimates calculated by the Statistical Information Team at Cancer Research UK. Based on data provided by the Office of National Statistics, ISD Scotland, the Welsh Cancer Intelligence and Surveillance Unit and the Northern Ireland Cancer Registry, on request, December 2013 to July 2014.
  2. Esteve J, Benhamou E and Raymond L. Descriptive epidemiology. IARC Scientific Publications No.128, Lyon, International Agency for Research on Cancer, pp 67-68 1994.
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The largest proportion of oesophageal cancer cases occur in the lower third of the oesophagus, with much smaller proportions in the middle and upper thirds (2010-2012).[1-4]

The proportion of cases in the lower third is higher in males (49.0%) than females (33.7%), whereas in the middle third there is a higher proportion in females (20.8%) than in males (10.7%). There are no marked sex differences in other parts of the oesophagus.[1-4]

A large proportion of cases did not have the specific part of the oesophagus recorded in cancer registry data, or overlapped more than one part.[1-4]

Oesophageal Cancer (C15), Percentage Distribution of Cases Diagnosed By Anatomical Site, by Sex, UK, 2010-2012

References

  1. Data were provided by the Office for National Statistics on request, July 2014. Similar data can be found here: http://www.ons.gov.uk/ons/rel/vsob1/cancer-statistics-registrations--england--series-mb1-/index.html.
  2. Data were provided by ISD Scotland on request, April 2014. Similar data can be found here: http://www.isdscotland.org/Health-Topics/Cancer/Publications/index.asp.
  3. Data were provided by the Welsh Cancer Intelligence and Surveillance Unit on request, April 2014. Similar data can be found here: http://www.wales.nhs.uk/sites3/page.cfm?orgid=242&pid=59080.
  4. Data were provided by the Northern Ireland Cancer Registry on request, June 2014. Similar data can be found here: http://www.qub.ac.uk/research-centres/nicr/CancerInformation/.
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There are two main histological types of oesophageal cancer: squamous cell carcinoma (SCC) Open a glossary item and adenocarcinoma (AC) Open a glossary item. While ICD-10 codes specify the anatomical location of the tumour, histological types within that location are distinguished using ICD-O morphology codes: SCC is ICD-O M805-M808, and AC is ICD-O M814-M838. 

SCC accounted for more than a quarter (28%) of all oesophageal cancer cases, while AC accounted for more than half (55%) in England in 2008-2010.[1] In the upper and middle sections of the oesophagus most cases (62%) were SCC, while in the lower section most cases (70%) were AC, in England in 2008-2010. Tobacco use increases the risk of both SCC and AC. SCC is also strongly linked with alcohol consumption, while AC is linked with excess body weight, and long-term acid reflux (which can lead to the pre-cancerous condition Barrett’s oesophagus).

The male:female incidence rate ratio for oesophageal cancer as a whole is 27:10. However, the male:female incidence rate ratio for AC is higher, around 52:10 and the male:female incidence rate ratio for SCC is lower, around 11:10.[1]

European age-standardised Open a glossary item (AS) incidence rates for SCC have remained stable for both males and females in England between 1995-1997 and 2008-2010. For males, AC rates have increased by 52% in this period, from 6.2 to 9.4 per 100,000 males. For females the rise in this period is smaller, with rates increasing by 32%, from 1.4 to 1.8 per 100,000 females.[1] This reflects the incidence trends observed in most western countries since the 1970s, where SCC rates have remained stable or decreased, while AC rates have increased, particularly in men.[2]

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Oesophageal cancer is the 19th most common cancer in Europe, with around 45,900 new cases diagnosed in 2012 (1% of the total). In Europe (2012), the highest World age-standardised Open a glossary item (AS) incidence rates for oesophageal cancer are in the Netherlands for men and the UK for women; the lowest rates are in Macedonia for men and the Republic of Moldova for women. UK oesophageal cancer incidence rates are estimated to be the second highest in males in Europe.[1] These data are broadly in line with Europe-specific data available elsewhere.[2]

Oesophageal cancer is the eighth most common cancer worldwide, with nearly 456,000 new cases diagnosed in 2012 (3% of the total). Oesophageal cancer incidence rates are highest in Eastern Asia and lowest in Western Africa, but this partly reflects varying data quality worldwide.[1]

Variation between countries may reflect different prevalence of risk factors, use of screening, and diagnostic methods.

References

  1. Ferlay J, Soerjomataram I, Ervik M, et al. GLOBOCAN 2012 v1.0, Cancer Incidence and Mortality Worldwide: IARC CancerBase No. 11 [Internet]. Lyon, France: International Agency for Research on Cancer; 2013. Available from:http://globocan.iarc.fr, accessed December 2013.
  2. Ferlay J, Steliarova-Foucher E, Lortet-Tieulent J, et al.Cancer incidence and mortality patterns in Europe: Estimates for 40 countries in 2012. European Journal of Cancer (2013) 49, 1374-1403.
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There is evidence for an association between oesophageal cancer incidence and deprivation for both males and females in England.[1] England-wide data for 2006-2010 show European age-standardised Open a glossary item incidence rates are 59% higher for males living in the most deprived areas compared with the least deprived, and 50% higher for females.[1]

Oesophageal Cancer (C15), European Age-Standardised Incidence Rates by Deprivation Quintile, England, 2006-2010

The estimated deprivation gradient in oesophageal cancer incidence between people living in the most and least deprived areas in England has widened for males in the period 1996-2010, but it has not changed for females.[1] It has been estimated that there would have been around 1,200 fewer cancer cases each year in England during 2006-2010 if all people experienced the same incidence rates as the least deprived.[1]

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Age-standardised rates Open a glossary item for White males with oesophageal cancer range from 13.9 to 14.4 per 100,000. Rates for Asian males are significantly lower, ranging from 3.6 to 6.1 per 100,000 and the rates for Black males are also significantly lower, ranging from 6.0 to 10.2 per 100,000. For females there is a similar pattern - the age-standardised rates for White females range from 5.5 to 5.7 per 100,000, and rates for Asian and Black females are also significantly lower, ranging from 2.5 to 4.5 per 100,000 and 2.1 to 4.5 per 100,000 respectively.[1]

Ranges are given because of the analysis methodology used to account for missing and unknown data. For oesophageal cancer, 31,517 cases were identified; 16% had no known ethnicity.

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In the UK around 10,700 people were still alive at the end of 2006, up to ten years after being diagnosed with oesophageal cancer.[1]

Oesophageal Cancer (C15), One, Five and Ten Year Cancer Prevalence, UK, 31st December 2006

1 Year Prevalence 5 Year Prevalence 10 Year Prevalence
Male 2,864 5,727 6,978
Female 1,418 2,868 3,674
Persons 4,282 8,595 10,652

Worldwide, it is estimated that there were around 482,000 men and women still alive in 2008, up to five years after their diagnosis.[2]

References

  1. National Cancer Intelligence Network (NCIN). One, Five and Ten Year Cancer Prevalence by Cancer Network, UK, 2006. London: NCIN; 2010.
  2. Ferlay J, Shin HR, Bray F, et al. GLOBOCAN 2008 v1.2, Cancer incidence and mortality worldwide: IARC CancerBase No. 10 [Internet]. Lyon, France: International Agency for Research on Cancer; 2010. Available from http://globocan.iarc.fr.
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Cancer Statistics Explained

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