According to the International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC), the number of cancer cases is increasing worldwide. In 2022, 20 million new cancer diagnoses were made, and the number is forecast to increase by 77 percent to 35 million per year by 2050, the IARC reported. Around one in five people will develop cancer in their lifetime. One in nine men and one in twelve women die from it.
According to the IARC, factors responsible for the expected increase include population growth and the fact that people are living longer and longer. In addition, there are increased risks due to lifestyle changes. Tobacco and alcohol consumption and obesity played a role, as did air pollution.
The agency, based in Lyon, France, is part of the World Health Organization (WHO) in Geneva. Two years earlier, in 2020, there were 19.3 million cancer diagnoses, according to a previous IARC release. However, the agency emphasizes that direct comparisons are difficult because the survey methods are constantly being updated.
According to the IARC, 9.7 million people died of cancer in 2022. The most common types of cancer were lung, breast and colon cancer. In women, breast cancer is the most common form, followed by lung and colon cancer. In men, lung cancer was the most common form, followed by prostate and colon cancer. The IARC evaluated data from 185 countries.
Most cancer deaths are due to lung cancer
Lung cancer was diagnosed in 2.5 million people in 2022. That was 12.4 percent of all cancer cases recorded. 2.3 million women were diagnosed with breast cancer, which corresponds to 11.6 percent of all cancer cases. Colon cancer was diagnosed in 1.9 million people (9.6 percent). This was followed in frequency by prostate and stomach cancer.
Lung cancer was also responsible for the most cancer deaths: 1.8 million. According to IARC, this corresponds to 18.7 percent of all people who died of cancer in 2022. 900,000 people died from colon cancer (9.3 percent) and 670,000 from breast cancer (6.9 percent). According to IARC, the number of people who were still alive five years after a cancer diagnosis was 53.5 million in 2022. In 2020, according to the IARC announcement at the time, this number was 50.6 million - but the same applies here: The agency considers direct comparisons to be difficult due to the constant improvement of survey methods.