Young people's cancers incidence statistics

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Cases

New cases of young people's cancers, 2015-2017, UK

 

Proportion of all cases

Percentage young people's cancer is of total cancer cases, 2015-2017, UK

 

Age

Age that more than half of young people's cancers cases are diagnosed, 2000-2009, UK

Trend over time

Change in young peoples' cancers incidence rates since the early 1990s, UK

 

Cancer in young people accounts for less than 1% of all new cancer cases in the UK (2015-2017).[1-4]

52% of young people's cancer cases in the UK are in females, and 48% are in males.

Young peoples' cancer incidence rates (European age-standardised (AS) rates Open a glossary item) are similar to the UK average in all the UK constituent countries.

Young peoples' cancer (C00-C97, D32-D33, D35.2-D35.4, D42-D43, D44.3-D44.5), Average Number of New Cases per Year, Crude and European Age-Standardised (AS) Incidence Rates per 100,000 Population, Ages 15-24, UK, 2015-2017

  England Scotland Wales Northern Ireland UK
Female Cases 1,087 106 68 39 1,300
Crude Rate 33.1 32.3 36.1 33.9 33.2
AS Rate 33.0 31.9 35.9 34.0 33.1
AS Rate - 95% LCI 31.9 28.4 31.0 27.9 32.0
AS Rate - 95% UCI 34.1 35.4 40.8 40.2 34.1
Male Cases 1,011 94 51 33 1,190
Crude Rate 29.3 28.3 24.9 27.4 29.0
AS Rate 29.2 28.0 24.8 27.7 28.9
AS Rate - 95% LCI 28.2 24.8 20.8 22.3 27.9
AS Rate - 95% UCI 30.3 31.3 28.7 33.1 29.8
Persons Cases 2,099 200 119 72 2,490
Crude Rate 31.2 30.3 30.3 30.5 31.0
AS Rate 31.1 29.9 30.1 30.8 30.9
AS Rate - 95% LCI 30.3 27.5 27.0 26.7 30.2
AS Rate - 95% UCI 31.8 32.3 33.2 34.9 31.6

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

References

  1. Data were provided by the National Cancer Registration and Analysis Service (part of Public Health England), on request through the Office for Data Release, November 2019. Similar data can be found here: https://www.ons.gov.uk/peoplepopulationandcommunity/healthandsocialcare/conditionsanddiseases/bulletins/cancerregistrationstatisticsengland/previousReleases
  2. Data were provided by ISD Scotland on request, April 2019. Similar data can be found here: http://www.isdscotland.org/Health-Topics/Cancer/Publications.
  3. Data were provided by the Welsh Cancer Intelligence and Surveillance Unit, Health Intelligence Division, Public Health Wales on request, December 2019. Similar data can be found here: http://www.wcisu.wales.nhs.uk.
  4. Data were provided by the Northern Ireland Cancer Registry on request, May 2019. Similar data can be found here: http://www.qub.ac.uk/research-centres/nicr/.

About this data

Data is for UK, 2015-2017, ICD-10 C00-C97, D32-D33, D35.2-D35.4, D42-D43, D44.3-D44.5.

All young people's cancers includes all malignant tumours (ICD-10 codes: C00-C97), and all benign/uncertain or unknown behaviour brain, other central nervous system and intracranial tumours (ICD-10 codes: D32-D33, D35.2-D35.4, D42-D43 and D44.3-D44.5).

Last reviewed:

The incidence of all cancers in 15-24 year-olds increases with age,[1] with the majority of cancers being diagnosed in those aged 20-24 (62% in the UK between 2000 and 2009) compared with 15-19 (38%). In males, the age-specific incidence rates rise from 188 per million in 15 year-olds to 329 per million in 24 year-olds, and in females from 154 to 368 per million, respectively.

All Young People's Cancers, Age-Specific Incidence Rates per Million Population, Ages 15-24, UK, 2000-2009

The age distributions vary considerably depending on subtype, however, with cancers showing various combinations of increases, plateaus and decreases in age-specific incidence rates across the age range.[9]

The largest rise in incidence between the ages of 15 and 24 occurs for cervical cancer with more than a hundred-fold increase in rates (from less than 1 per million in 15 year-olds to 56 per million in 24 year-olds).[1] The incidence rate for female breast cancer also rises dramatically with age with more than a fifty-fold increase in rates (from less than 1 per million in 15 year-olds to 22 per million in 24 year-olds). In males, the largest rise in incidence occurs for testicular germ cell tumours (GCTs) with a nine-fold increase in rates (from 12 per million in 15 year-olds to 107 per million in 24 year-olds). Other cancers showing large increases in incidence rates across the age range include malignant melanoma (seven- and eight-fold increases in males and females, respectively), and ovarian cancer (nine-fold increase).

None of the cancers show dramatic decreases in incidence rates between the ages of 15 and 24, though several show modest declines (between three- and six-fold).[1] These include osteosarcoma, rhabdomyosarcoma, Ewing tumours and Acute lymphoblastic leukaemia (ALL). In males, the largest decline in incidence across the age range occurs for osteosarcoma with more than a six-fold decrease in rates (from 13 per million in 15 year-olds to 2 per million in 24 year-olds), whilst in females the largest decline occurs for rhabdomyosarcoma with a five-fold decrease (from 3 to less than 1 per million, respectively).

Young People's Cancers by Cancer Type, Age-Specific Incidence Rates per Million Population, Ages 15-24, UK, 2000-2009

References

  1. Data were provided by Public Health England Knowledge and Intelligence Team (North West) on request. Similar data can be found here: http://www.nwcis.nhs.uk/

About this data

Data is for UK, 2000-2009, ICD-10 C00-C97, D32-D33, D35.2-D35.4, D42-D43, D44.3-D44.5.

All young people's cancers includes all malignant tumours (ICD-10 codes: C00-C97), and all benign/uncertain or unknown behaviour brain, other central nervous system and intracranial tumours (ICD-10 codes: D32-D33, D35.2-D35.4, D42-D43 and D44.3-D44.5).

Last reviewed:

European age-standardised (AS) incidence rates for cancers in young people (females and males combined) increased by 28% in the UK between 1993-1995 and 2015-2017.[1-4] The increase was larger in females than in males.

For cancers in female young people, AS incidence rates in the UK increased by 40% between 1993-1995 and 2015-2017.For cancers in male young people, AS incidence rates in the UK increased by 17% between 1993-1995 and 2015-2017.

Over the last decade in the UK (between 2005-2007 and 2015-2017), AS incidence rates for cancers in young people (in females and males combined) increased by 10%.[1-4] In females AS incidence rates increased by 19%, and in males rates remained stable.

Young Peoples' Cancers (ICD-10 C00-C97, D32-D33, D35.2-D35.4, D42-D43, D44.3-D44.5), European Age-Standardised Incidence Rates, Ages 15-24, UK, 1993-2017

All young people’s cancers includes all malignant tumours (ICD-10 codes: C00-C97), and all non-malignant brain, other central nervous system and intracranial tumours (ICD-10 codes: D32-D33, D35.2-D35.4, D42-D43 and D44.3-D44.5.
 

These trends include non-malignant brain, other central nervous system and intracranial tumours because they account for a relatively high proportion of cases in this age group. However, trends for these tumours are unreliable pre-2000s, and largely reflect improved data collection rather than true increased incidence. Percentage increases since the late 1970s and early 1990s are very slightly smaller if these tumours are excluded.

References

  1. Data were provided by the National Cancer Registration and Analysis Service (part of Public Health England), on request through the Office for Data Release, November 2019. Similar data can be found here: https://www.ons.gov.uk/peoplepopulationandcommunity/healthandsocialcare/conditionsanddiseases/bulletins/cancerregistrationstatisticsengland/previousReleases
  2. Data were provided by ISD Scotland on request, April 2019. Similar data can be found here: http://www.isdscotland.org/Health-Topics/Cancer/Publications.
  3. Data were provided by the Welsh Cancer Intelligence and Surveillance Unit, Health Intelligence Division, Public Health Wales on request, December 2019. Similar data can be found here: http://www.wcisu.wales.nhs.uk.
  4. Data were provided by the Northern Ireland Cancer Registry on request, May 2019. Similar data can be found here: http://www.qub.ac.uk/research-centres/nicr/.

About this data

Data is for UK, 1993-2017, ICD-10 C00-C97, D32-D33, D35.2-D35.4, D42-D43, D44.3-D44.5.

All young people's cancers for England, Wales and Scotland includes all malignant tumours (ICD-10 codes: C00-C97), and all non-malignant brain, other central nervous system and intracranial tumours (ICD-10 codes: D32-D33, D35.2-D35.4, D42-D43 and D44.3-D44.5

Last reviewed:

Cancers in young people are further classified into cancer type using the internationally accepted young people classification system, which also takes morphology into account. The classification divides young people cancers into ten cancer types (called diagnostic groups), with further subgroups and divisions.[1,2] It is similar, but not identical to, the system used for the classification of childhood tumours.[3]

The three most common cancer types in young people are lymphomas, carcinomas and germ cell tumours.[4]

Young People's Cancers by Cancer Type, Average Number of New Cases per Year, Ages 15-24, UK, 2000-2009

References

  1. Birch JM, Alston RD, Kelsey AM, et al. Classification and incidence of cancers in adolescents and young adults in England 1979-1997. Br J Cancer 2002;87:1267-74.
  2. Barr RD, Holowaty EJ, Birch JM. Classification schemes for tumors diagnosed in adolescents and young adults. Cancer 2006;106:1425-30.
  3. Steliarova-Foucher E, Stiller C, Lacour B, et al. International Classification of Childhood Cancer, third edition. Cancer 2005;103:1457-67.
  4. Data were provided by Public Health England Knowledge and Intelligence Team (North West) on request. Similar data can be found here: http://www.nwcis.nhs.uk/

About this data

Data is for UK, 1993-2015, ICD-10 C00-C97, D32-D33, D35.2-D35.4, D42-D43, D44.3-D44.5.

All young people's cancers includes all malignant tumours (ICD-10 codes: C00-C97), and all benign/uncertain or unknown behaviour brain, other central nervous system and intracranial tumours (ICD-10 codes: D32-D33, D35.2-D35.4, D42-D43 and D44.3-D44.5).

Last reviewed:

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Acknowledgements

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