How Prevalent Is Cancer?

The prevalence of cancer in the U.S. is determined by the number of people who have been diagnosed with any form of cancer at some point in their lives, even if they are now in remission.

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According to the American Cancer Society, the statistics also take into account how long a person survives after their diagnosis and how often the cancer occurs. This means that high-prevalence cancers are common but also have a long survival rate, whereas a common cancer with a short survival rate would have a lower prevalence. For instance, non-Hodgkins lymphoma is rarer than lung cancer but has a higher prevalence because patients generally survive for longer, so therefore there are more of them at any time.

The survival rate for cancer patients in 2014 was 64 percent for those who had been diagnosed five or more years ago and 15 percent for those diagnosed 20 or more years ago. Almost half of all cancer survivors (46 percent) were over the age of 70.

In 2014, the 10 most prevalent cancers in the U.S. for men were:

Prostate cancer                          2,975,970 cases or 43 percent of all male cancers
Colon and rectum                        621,430 cases or 9 percent of all male cancers
Melanoma                                      516,570 cases or 8 percent of all male cancers
Urinary bladder                            455,520 cases or 7 percent of all male cancers
Non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma         297,820 cases or 4 percent of all male cancers
Testis                                                 244,110 cases or 4 percent of all male cancers
Kidney                                              229,790 cases or 3 percent of all male cancers
Lung and bronchus                       196,558 cases or 3 percent of all male cancers
Oral cavity and pharynx               194,140 cases or 3 percent of all male cancers
Leukemia                                         177,940 cases or 3 percent of all male cancers

In 2014, the 10 most prevalent cancers in the U.S. for women were:

Breast                                           3,131,440 cases or 41 percent of all female cancers
Uterine corpus                               624,890 cases or 8 percent of all female cancers
Colon and rectum                        624,340 cases or 8 percent of all female cancers
Melanoma                                       528,860 cases or 7 percent of all female cancers
Thyroid                                            470,020 cases or 6 percent of all female cancers
Non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma         272,000 cases or 4 percent of all female cancers
Cervix                                               244,180 cases or 3 percent of all female cancers
Lung and bronchus                       233,510 cases or 3 percent of all female cancers
Ovary                                                199,900 cases or 3 percent of all female cancers
Kidney                                              159,280 cases or 2 percent of all female cancers

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Breast Cancer News is strictly a news and information website about the disease. It does not provide medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. This content is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of your physician or another qualified health provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition. Never disregard professional medical advice or delay in seeking it because of something you have read on this website.

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