Cancer Statistics for the UK
New cases of cancer, 2015, UK
Deaths from cancer, 2016, UK
Survive cancer for 10 or more years, 2010-11, England and Wales
Cancer cases are preventable, UK, 2015
- There are more than 360,000 new cancer cases in the UK every year, that's nearly 990 every day (2013-2015).
- In males in the UK, there were around 183,000 new cancer cases in 2015.
- In females in the UK, there were around 177,000 new cancer cases in 2015.
- Every two minutes someone in the UK is diagnosed with cancer.
- Breast, prostate, lung and bowel cancers together accounted for over half (53%) of all new cancer cases in the UK in 2015.
- Each year more than a third (36%) of all cancer cases in the UK are diagnosed in people aged 75 and over (2013-2015).
- Incidence rates for all cancers combined in the UK are highest in people aged 85 to 89 (2013-2015).
- There are around 164,000 cancer deaths in the UK every year, that's around 450 every day (2014-2016).
- Cancer accounts for more than a quarter (28%) of all deaths in the UK (2016).
- In males in the UK, there were around 88,200 cancer deaths in 2016.
- In females in the UK, there were around 77,900 cancer deaths in 2016.
- Every four minutes someone in the UK dies from cancer.
- Lung, bowel, breast and prostate cancers together accounted for almost half (45%) of all cancer deaths in the UK in 2016.
- Around a fifth of all cancer deaths are from lung cancer.
- Each year more than half (53%) of all cancer deaths in the UK are in people aged 75 and over (2014-2016).
- Mortality rates for all cancers combined in the UK are highest in people aged 90+ (2014-2016).
- Half (50%) of people diagnosed with cancer in England and Wales survive their disease for ten years or more (2010-11).
- Cancer survival is higher in women than men.
- Cancer survival is improving and has doubled in the last 40 years in the UK.
- Cancer survival is generally higher in people diagnosed aged under 40 years old, with the exception of breast, bowel and prostate cancers, where survival is highest in middle age.
- 1 in 2 people in the UK born after 1960 will be diagnosed with some form of cancer during their lifetime.
- A person’s risk of developing cancer depends on many factors, including age, genetics, and exposure to risk factors.
- Around 4 in 10 UK cancer cases every year could be prevented, that’s more than 135,000 every year.
- Nearly 112,000 England cases, around 13,000 Scotland cancer cases, around 7,200 Wales cancer cases, and around 3,500 Northern Ireland cancer cases every year could be prevented.
- Smoking is the largest cause of cancer in the UK.
- 'Two-week wait' is the most common route to diagnosing cancer.
- Screening is the route with the highest proportion of cases diagnosed at an early stage, for all cancers combined.
- 'Two-week wait' standards are met by all countries, '31-day wait' is met by all but Northern Ireland and Wales, and '62-day wait' is not met by any country for all cancers combined.
- Around 9 in 10 patients had a ‘very good’ or ‘excellent’ patient experience.
- Almost 9 in 10 patients are given the name of their Clinical Nurse Specialist.
- 45% of patients diagnosed with cancer have surgery to remove the tumor as part of their primary cancer treatment. 27% of patients have radiotherapy, and 28% have chemotherapy.
About this data
The latest data available for most cancers in the UK are: incidence 2015, mortality 2016 and survival 2010-11. Source years are specified in each section, for these and all other datasets.
Coding and counting information is available with the in-depth content by cancer type.
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