Vulval cancer incidence statistics

Cases

New cases of vulval cancer, 2013, UK

 

Proportion of all cases

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

 

Age

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

 

Trend since 1970s

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

 

Vulval cancer is the 20th most common cancer among females in the UK, accounting for 0.8% of all new cases of cancer in female cases (2013).[1-4]

In 2013, there were 1,313 new cases of vulval cancer in the UK.[1-4] The crude incidence rate Open a glossary item shows that there are 4 new vulval cancer cases for every 100,000 females in the UK.

The European age-standardised incidence rate Open a glossary item (AS rate) in England is significantly lower compared with Scotland.[1-4] Rates do not differ significantly between the other constituent countries of the UK.

Vulval Cancer (C51), Number of New Cases, Crude and European Age-Standardised (AS) Incidence Rates per 100,000 Population, Females, UK, 2013

England Wales Scotland Northern Ireland UK
Cases 1,061 78 142 32 1,313
Crude Rate 3.9 5.0 5.2 3.4 4.0
AS Rate 4.0 4.8 5.1 3.8 4.1
AS Rate - 95% LCL 3.7 3.7 4.3 2.5 3.9
AS Rate - 95% UCL 4.2 5.8 5.9 5.2 4.3

95% LCL and 95% UCL are the 95% lower and upper confidence limits Open a glossary item around the AS Rate Open a glossary item

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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Vulval cancer incidence is strongly related to age, with the highest incidence rates being in older females. In the UK in 2011-2013, on average each year almost 6 in 10 (56%) cases were diagnosed in females aged 70 and over.[1-4]

Age-specific incidence rates rise gradually from around age 35-39, and more sharply from around age 65-69, reaching the highest rates in the 90+ age group.[1-4]

Vulval Cancer (C51), Average Number of New Cases per Year and Age-Specific Incidence Rates, Females, 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 (PDF 544KB).
  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/ 
Last reviewed:

Vulval cancer incidence rates have increased by 13% in females in Great Britain since the late 1970s.[1-3] This includes a period of stability followed by an increase.

European age-standardised Open a glossary item (AS) rates remained stable between 1979-1981 and 1991-1993, then increased by 18% between 1991-1993 and 2011-2013.

Vulval Cancer (C51), European Age-Standardised Incidence Rates, Females, 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), vulval cancer AS incidence rates in females have increased by 10%.[1-4]

Vulval Cancer (C51), European Age-Standardised Incidence Rates, Females, UK, 1993-2013

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

Vulval cancer incidence trends probably reflect changing prevalence of risk factors, with recent incidence trends influenced by risk factor prevalence in years past, and current risk factor prevalence perhaps not to show an impact for some time.

Vulval cancer incidence rates have increased overall for the younger adult age groups in Great Britain since the late-1970s, whilst remaining stable for older age groups.[1-3]

Rates have increased in females aged 25-49, and 50-59. The largest increases have been in 25-49 year olds, for whom European AS incidence rates more than doubled (134% increase) between 1979-1981 and 2011-2013. Rates have remained stable in females aged 60-69, 70-79, and 80+.

Vulval Cancer (C51), European Age-Standardised Incidence Rates, by Age, Great Britain, Females, 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 (PDF 544KB).
  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/
Last reviewed:

Squamous cell carcinomas (SCC) account for more than 90% of vulval cancers.[1] The other 10% includes melanomas, sarcomas, basal cell carcinomas Open a glossary item and adenocarcinomas Open a glossary item.[2]

References

  1. Woolas RP, Shepherd JH. Current developments in the management of vulval carcinoma. In O'Brian PMS (Eds). The Yearbook of Obstetrics and Gynecology. London, RCOG Press: 1999.
  2. Daling JR, Sherman JH. Cancers of the vulva and vagina. In Schottenfeld D, Fraumeni J (Eds). Cancer epidemiology and prevention. London:OUP; 1996.
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The lifetime risk of developing vulval cancer is around 1 in 275 for women, in 2012 in the UK.[1]

The lifetime risk for vulval cancer has been calculated to account for the possibility that someone can have more than one diagnosis of vulval cancer over the course of their lifetime (‘Adjusted for Multiple Primaries’ (AMP) 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. Sasieni PD, Shelton J, Ormiston-Smith N, et al. What is the lifetime risk of developing cancer?: The effect of adjusting for multiple primaries. Br J Cancer, 2011. 105(3): p. 460-5.
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 There is evidence for an association between vulval cancer incidence and deprivation in England.[1] England-wide data for 2006-2010 show European age-standardised Open a glossary item incidence rates are 82% higher for females living in the most deprived areas compared with the least deprived.[1]

Vulval Cancer (C51), European Age-Standardised Incidence Rates by Deprivation Quintile, Females, England, 2006-2010

The estimated deprivation gradient in vulval cancer incidence between females living in the most and least deprived areas in England has widened in the period 1996-2010.[1] It has been estimated that there would have been around 240 fewer cancer cases each year in England during 2006-2010 if all females experienced the same incidence rates as the least deprived.[1

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A substantial proportion of vulval invasive tumours are found with adjacent evidence of pre-cancers, known collectively as vulval intraepithelial neoplasia (VIN).

There are two main types of VIN. These are HPV-related tumours, which precede almost all vulval cancers in women under 45; and lichen sclerosus-related Open a glossary item tumours, which are the major cause of vulval cancer in older women.[1,2]

References

  1. Ridley CM. The aetiology of vulval neoplasia. Br J Obstet Gynaecol. 1994; 101(8): 655-7.
  2. Canavan TP, Cohen D. Vulvar cancer. Am Fam Physician 2002; 66(7): 1269-74
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