Cancer deaths rise to 9.6 million globally as populations age

Nearly half of new cancer cases and more than half of cancer deaths worldwide in 2018 will be in Asia

(Thomson Reuters) — Cancer will claim the lives of 9.6 million people in 2018, accounting for one in eight of all deaths among men and one in 11 among women, the World Health Organization’s cancer research agency said on Wednesday.

In its GLOBOCAN report detailing prevalence and death rates from many different types of cancer, the WHO’s International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC) said the global cancer burden would rise to an estimated 18.1 million new cases this year. This was up from 14.1 million — and 8.2 million deaths — in 2012, when the last GLOBACAN survey was published.

IARC said the rising cancer burden — characterized as the number of new cases, the prevalence, and the number of deaths — was due to several factors, including social and economic development and growing and aging populations.

In emerging economies, it said, there is also a shift from cancers related to poverty and infections towards cancers linked to lifestyles and diets more typical of wealthier countries. (…)