Latest annual report from the National Cancer Registry

Updated statistics on cancer incidence, mortality and survival published today (1st October 2019) by the National Cancer Registry (NCRI), show that, although the numbers of cases diagnosed annually continues to rise (largely driven by population growth and ageing), survival prospects for patients continue to improve.

Survival graphs for Annual Report

It is estimated that about 35,440 invasive cancers were diagnosed annually during 2017-2019, or 23,890 cancers excluding the common but rarely fatal non-melanoma skin cancer (or 43,360 cancers and non-invasive tumours registered by NCRI). The age-adjusted risk of developing cancer was about 22% higher for men than for women, overall (excluding non-melanoma skin cancers), and also higher for most cancer types.

Cancer is the most common cause of death in Ireland, accounting for almost 31% of deaths in 2016, and an annual average of about 9,020 deaths from invasive cancer occurred during 2014-2016. Lung cancer was the leading cause of cancer death in both sexes, accounting for 20% of cancer deaths in women and 22% in men. The risk of dying of cancer was about 32% higher for men than for women.

Survival for Irish cancer patients continues to improve. Five-year net survival for patients diagnosed during 2011-2015 averaged 63% for men and 60% for women (excluding non-melanoma skin cancers), up from 39% in men and 46% in women diagnosed during 1994-1999. Significant survival improvements are evident for most types of cancer.

Reflecting population growth and survival gains, the number of people living with and beyond cancer (cancer prevalence) continues to grow. There were an estimated 180,000 people living after a diagnosis of invasive cancer other than non-melanoma skin cancer at the end of 2017. This figure is equivalent to 3.8% of the Irish population, and is likely to reach 200,000 by 2020. Cancer prevalence was highest for breast cancer (23% of all cancer survivors), prostate cancer (21%), and colorectal cancer (12%).

A full copy of the report is available to download here.


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