World Cancer Day: Some Key Considerations
Thursday the 4th of February 2021 was World Cancer Day. While this was somewhat overshadowed by other news, it is useful to remember some important facts about cancer. The folks over at “Our World in Data,” provide us with key details. The first one shows that cancer is the second leading cause of death across the globe; and has been causing an increasing number of deaths annually over the past 20 years.
Looking at the types of cancer, the following chart shows the relative distribution of causes. Tracheal, bronchus, and lung cancer is the leading form of cancer deaths across most high and middle-income countries. However, the leading form in lower income countries varies: colon and rectum; liver; cervical; stomach; breast and prostrate all top the list in several countries and regions.
When it comes to distribution by age, almost half – 46% in 2017 – of all people who die from cancer are 70 or older. Another 41 percent are between 50 and 69 years old – so that 87% of all cancer victims are older than 50 years.
The prevalence of cancer around the world is shown in the image at the top of this post. The following slideshow gives an overview of other statistics related to cancer.