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Report spells out China's cancer risk

(China Daily)

08:30, January 10, 2013

A family member of a cancer patient seeks advice from a doctor by showing the patient's CT images at Tianjin Medical University Cancer Hospital in April. (Photo/Xinhua)

One in five may fall victim if they live to be 74

About one in five Chinese people might develop cancer if they live to be 74, according to a new report.

There is one death from cancer every five minutes on the Chinese mainland, which translates into 2.7 million cancer deaths annually, according to the 2012 Cancer Registry Annual Report, which is recognized by the government.

The figures are based on data collected from 72 cancer surveillance sites in 24 provinces, covering 85 million people.

"Worldwide, China continued to have relatively low cancer incidence, but the death rate was relatively high," Chen Wanqing, deputy director of the National Central Cancer Registry, under the Ministry of Health, told China Daily on Wednesday.

The report said the cancer rate stands at 285.91 per 100,000 people in China, bringing 3.12 million new cases a year.

This is lower than most developed economies, like the United States, European nations and Australia, but far higher than in underdeveloped economies, Chen said.

"The cancer incidence rate goes up as people age," he said, peaking when they reach 80.

Given its rapidly aging population, "China's cancer burden will increase as well," Chen said.

The report said lung, stomach, colorectal and liver cancers are the main types among the Chinese population, with lung, liver and stomach cancers being the top killers.

Breast, lung, thyroid and colorectal cancers are rising sharply, Chen said.

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