(HealthDay News) — For young adults, there have been some notable findings for overall cancer incidence rates and death rates, according to a study published online in the Journal of the National Cancer Institute.

Elizabeth Ward, PhD, from the North American Association of Central Cancer Registries in Springfield, Illinois, and colleagues describe the cancer burden among men and women and highlight trends in those aged 20 to 49 years.

The researchers found that during 2011 to 2015, for all ages, overall cancer incidence rates were 494.3 and 420.5 per 100,000 among men and women, respectively; incidence rates decreased 2.1% (95% confidence interval [CI], −2.6 to −1.6%) per year in men and were stable in women. Overall cancer death rates decreased from 2012 to 2016 by 1.8% (95% CI, −1.8 to −1.8 percent) and 1.4% (95% CI, −1.4 to −1.4%) per year in men and women, respectively. Among adults aged 20 to 49 years, men had substantially lower overall cancer incidence rates than women (115.3 vs 203.3 per 100,000). The incidence of all invasive cancers decreased among men (−0.7% per year; 95% CI, −1.0 to −0.4%) and increased among women (1.3% per year; 95% CI, 0.7 to 1.9%) during 2011 to 2015 for those aged 20 to 49 years. For all cancer sites combined, the death rate was 22.8 and 27.1 per 100,000, respectively, among men and women aged 20 to 49 years during 2012 to 2016, with decreases of 2.3% (95% CI, −2.4 to −2.2%) among men and 1.7% (95% CI, −1.8 to −1.6%) among women per year.

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“The greater cancer burden among women than men ages 20 to 49 was a striking finding of this study,” Ward said in a statement.


Ward E, Sherman RL, Henley SJ, et al. Annual Report to the Nation on the Status of Cancer, 1999–2015, Featuring Cancer in Men and Women ages 20–49. J Natl Canc Inst, djz106, doi:10.1093/jnci/djz106

Ganz PA. Current US Cancer Statistics: Alarming trends in young adults? J Natl Canc Inst. doi:10.1093/jnci/djz107