|LETTER TO THE EDITOR
|Year : 2022 | Volume
| Issue : 3 | Page : 438-439
Breast cancer surpasses lung cancer as the most commonly diagnosed cancer worldwide
MD Abu Bashar1, Nazia Begam2
1 Department of Community Medicine & Family Medicine, All India Institute of Medical Sciences, Gorakhpur, Uttar Pradesh, India
2 Specialist Medical Officer(ENT), ECHS Hospital, Ambala, Haryana, India
|Date of Submission||25-Jan-2021|
|Date of Decision||18-Feb-2021|
|Date of Acceptance||01-Jun-2021|
|Date of Web Publication||12-Oct-2022|
MD Abu Bashar
Department of Community Medicine & Family Medicine, All India Institute of Medical Sciences, Gorakhpur, Uttar Pradesh
Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None
|How to cite this article:|
Bashar MA, Begam N. Breast cancer surpasses lung cancer as the most commonly diagnosed cancer worldwide. Indian J Cancer 2022;59:438-9
As per the latest global cancer burden estimates from the International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC), a specialized agency for cancer research of World Health Organization (WHO), breast cancer now tops the list of the most commonly diagnosed cancers worldwide, surpassing lung cancer for the first time.
The global cancer burden has been estimated to have risen to 19.3 million new cases and 10.0 million deaths in 2020. One in 5 people globally develop cancer during their lifetime, and one in 8 men and one in 11 women are dying from the disease. Similarly, the total number of people who are alive within 5 years of a cancer diagnosis – called the 5-year prevalence – is estimated to be 50.6 million worldwide.
The 10 most common cancer types account for more than 60% of the total newly diagnosed cancer cases and more than 70% of the total cancer deaths. Female breast cancer is the most commonly occurring cancer worldwide (11.7% of the total new cases), followed by lung cancer (11.4%), colorectal cancer (10.0%), prostate cancer (7.3%), and stomach cancer (5.6%). Lung cancer is still the leading cause of cancer death (18.0% of the total cancer deaths), followed by colorectal cancer (9.4%), liver cancer (8.3%), stomach cancer (7.7%), and female breast cancer (6.9%). In men, lung cancer is the most commonly diagnosed cancer (14.3% of all diagnosed cancers in males) and the leading cause of cancer deaths (21.5% of all cancer deaths in males), followed by prostate cancer and colorectal cancer for incidence and liver cancer and colorectal cancer for mortality. In women, breast cancer is the most diagnosed cancer and the leading cause of cancer death, followed by colorectal cancer and lung cancer for incidence and lung cancer and colorectal cancer for mortality.
Worldwide, an estimated 28.4 million new cancer cases are projected to occur in 2040, a 47% increase from the estimated 19.3 million cases in 2020. In terms of disability adjusted life years (DALYs), cancer caused 208.3 million DALYs in year 2015 worldwide. Out of this, 15.1 million DALYs were lost due to breast cancer in women alone, whereas tracheal, bronchus, and lung cancer combinedly accounted for 25.9 million DALYs in men.
The estimated 2.3 million new cases of breast cancer in 2020 implies that one in every 8 cancers diagnosed was breast cancer. The disease is now the fifth leading cause of cancer mortality worldwide, with 685000 deaths in 2020. In women, breast cancer accounts for one in four cancer cases and one in six cancer deaths, and the disease ranks first in terms of incidence and mortality in most of the countries around the world (in 159 and 110 countries, respectively). Marked changes in lifestyle, sociocultural contexts, and built environments are having a major impact on the prevalence of risk factors for breast cancer in many countries with low and medium Human Development Index (HDI). These risk factors include the postponement of childbearing and having fewer children, as well as greater levels of excess body weight and physical inactivity.,,,,, Breast cancer incidence rates are converging worldwide, yet breast cancer mortality rates are higher and the survival proportions are lower in settings with lower HDI, largely because of late-stage presentation. There is an overwhelming need for evidence-based and resource-stratified guidelines that support the phased implementation of breast cancer early detection and treatment into real-world practice in low- and middle-income countries (LMICs). The WHO and IARC are currently working together in this direction to launch a new global breast cancer initiative in 2021, focusing on improving timely diagnosis and comprehensive treatment to improve population-level outcomes.
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Conflicts of interest
There are no conflicts of interest.
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