Brain, other CNS and intracranial tumours statistics

Cases

New cases of brain tumour each year, 2017-2019 average, UK.

Deaths

Deaths from brain tumours, 2017-2019, UK.

Survival

Survive brain tumours for 10 or more years, 2013-2017, England

Prevention

Brain and other CNS tumour cases are preventable, UK, 2015

 

  • There are around 12,700 new brain, other CNS and intracranial tumours cases in the UK every year, that's 35 every day (2017-2019).
  • Brain, other CNS and intracranial tumours is the 9th most common cancer in the UK, accounting for 3% of all new cancer cases (2017-2019).
  • In females in the UK, brain, other CNS and intracranial tumours is the 7th most common cancer, with around 6,700 new cases every year (2017-2019).
  • In males in the UK, brain, other CNS and intracranial tumours is the 11th most common cancer, with around 6,100 new cases every year (2017-2019).
  • Incidence rates for brain, other CNS and intracranial tumours in the UK are highest in people aged 85 to 89 (2017-2019).
  • Each year around a quarter (24%) of all new brain, other CNS and intracranial tumours cases in the UK are diagnosed in people aged 75 and over (2017-2019).
  • Since the early 1990s, brain, other CNS and intracranial tumours incidence rates have increased by almost two-fifths (39%) in the UK. Rates in females have increased by around half (51%), and rates in males have increased by more than a quarter (27%) (2016-2018).
  • Over the last decade, brain, other CNS and intracranial tumours incidence rates have increased by around a tenth (11%) in the UK. Rates in females have increased by almost a sixth (16%), and rates in males have increased by around a twentieth (6%) (2016-2018).
  • The most common specific location for malignant brain, other CNS and intracranial tumours in the UK is the brain (2016-2018).
  • The most common specific location for benign brain, other CNS and intracranial tumours in the UK is the meninges (2016-2018).
  • Brain, other CNS and intracranial tumours incidence rates are projected to fall by 3% in the UK between 2023-2025 and 2038-2040.
  • There could be around 13,600 new cases of brain, other CNS and intracranial tumours every year in the UK by 2038-2040, projections suggest.
  • Brain, other CNS and intracranial tumours incidence rates in England in females are similar in the most deprived quintile compared with the least, and in males are 8% lower in the most deprived quintile compared with the least (2013-2017).
  • Around 190 cases of brain, other CNS and intracranial tumours each year in males in England are linked with lower deprivation.
  • Incidence rates for brain, other CNS and intracranial tumours are lower in the Asian and Black ethnic groups, and in people of mixed or multiple ethnicity, compared with the White ethnic group, in England (2013-2017). See our publication Cancer Incidence by Broad Ethnic Group for more details.
  • In the UK more than 9,700 people were still alive at the end of 2006, up to ten years after being diagnosed with a tumour in the brain, or other parts of the CNS.

See more in-depth brain, other CNS and intracranial tumours incidence statistics

  • There are around 5,500 brain, other CNS and intracranial tumours deaths in the UK every year, that's 15 every day (2017-2019).
  • Brain, other CNS and intracranial tumours is the 10th most common cause of cancer death in the UK, accounting for 3% of all cancer deaths (2017-2019).
  • In females in the UK, brain, other CNS and intracranial tumours is the 9th most common cause of cancer death, with around 2,400 deaths every year (2017-2019).
  • In males in the UK, brain, other CNS and intracranial tumours is the 9th most common cause of cancer death, with around 3,100 deaths every year (2017-2019).
  • Mortality rates for brain, other CNS and intracranial tumours in the UK are highest in people aged 90+ (2017-2019).
  • Each year around a third of all brain, other CNS and intracranial tumours deaths (34%) in the UK are in people aged 75 and over (2017-2019).
  • Since the early 1970s, brain, other CNS and intracranial tumours (malignant only) mortality rates have increased by more than half (53%) in the UK. Rates in females have increased by half (50%), and rates in males have increased by almost three fifths (55%).
  • Over the last decade, brain, other CNS and intracranial tumours (malignant and non-malignant) mortality rates have remained stable in the UK. Rates in females have remained stable, and rates in males have remained stable 2017-2019).
  • Mortality rates for malignant brain tumours are generally lower in people of non-White minority ethnicity, compared with the White ethnic group, in England and Wales (2017-2019). See the publication Mortality from leading causes of death by ethnic group, England and Wales.
  • Brain, other CNS and intracranial tumours mortality rates are projected to fall by less than 1% in the UK between 2023-2025 and 2038-2040.
  • There could be around around 6,600 deaths of brain, other CNS and intracranial tumours every year in the UK by 2038-2040, projections suggest.
  • Brain tumour deaths in England are not associated with deprivation.

See more in-depth brain, other CNS and intracranial tumours mortality statistics

  • Around 1 in 10 (11.2%) people diagnosed with brain cancer in England survive their disease for ten years or more, it is predicted (2013-2017).
  • Brain cancer ten-year survival in England is higher in females than males (2013-2017).
  • Around 4 in 10 (42.1%) people in England diagnosed with brain cancer aged 15-44 survive their disease for ten years or more, compared with 2 in 100 (2.2%) people diagnosed aged 65-74 (2013-2017).
  • Brain cancer survival has doubled in the last 50 years in the UK.
  • In the 1970s, around almost 1 in 10 (7.3%) people diagnosed with brain cancer survived their disease beyond five years, by the 2010s it was around 3 in 20 (13.5%).
  • 3 in 20 (14.8%) people in England diagnosed with brain cancer in the least deprived group survive their disease for five years or more, compared with a fifth (20.1%) of people in the most deprived group (2015-2019).
  • For brain cancer, like other cancer sites, survival trends reflect a combination of changes in treatment and stage distribution. These factors themselves can vary by age, sex and deprivation.
  • Further survival statistics by stage can be found on the Early Diagnosis Data Hub and information on treatments for cancer can be found here.
  • Further one-, five- and ten-year survival statistics can be found on the Cancer Statistics Dashboard.

Find further information on our brain cancer survival trends page

  • 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).
  • Nearly 1 in 66 UK females and 1 in 74 UK males will be diagnosed with brain, other CNS and intracranial tumours in their lifetime (born in 1961).
  • 3% of brain and other CNS tumour cases in the UK are preventable.
  • Less than 1% of brain and other CNS tumour cases in the UK are caused by ionising radiation.
  • 2% of brain and other CNS tumour cases in the UK are caused by overweight and obesity.

See more in-depth brain, other CNS and intracranial tumours risk statistics

See the interactive cancer treatment online tool produced by the National Cancer Registration and Analysis Service (NCRAS) in partnership with Cancer Research UK (CRUK). This presents, for the first time, population-based statistics on chemotherapy, radiotherapy and surgical tumour resections in England, by demographic factors and geography.

Want the key stats in the sections on this page as a document? or looking for a stats report of the in-depth stats? Use the print function at the bottom of any Cancer Stats page Share this page > Print or your browser options to print or save.

Citation

You are welcome to reuse this Cancer Research UK content for your own work.
Credit us as authors by referencing Cancer Research UK as the primary source. Suggested styles are:

Web content: Cancer Research UK, full URL of the page, Accessed [month] [year].
Publications: Cancer Research UK ([year of publication]), Name of publication, Cancer Research UK.
Graphics (when reused unaltered): Credit: Cancer Research UK.
Graphics (when recreated with differences): Based on a graphic created by Cancer Research UK.

When Cancer Research UK material is used for commercial reasons, we encourage a donation to our life-saving research.
Send a cheque payable to Cancer Research UK to: Cancer Research UK, 2 Redman Place, London, E20 1JQ or

Donate online

Acknowledgements

We are grateful to the many organisations across the UK which collect, analyse, and share the data which we use, and to the patients and public who consent for their data to be used. Find out more about the sources which are essential for our statistics.