How common is cancer?

In NSW, 1 in 2 people will be diagnosed with a type of cancer by the age of 85.

There were 43,378 new cases of cancer diagnosed in NSW in 2015*. This is projected to rise to 50,168 new cases  in 2021.

Men are 1.2 times more likely than women to be diagnosed with cancer (23,926 men and 19,452 women).

The most common cancers in NSW are prostate, breast, melanoma, lung and bowel. These account for about 56% of all cancers diagnosed.

Advances in prevention, early detection, diagnosis and treatment of cancer mean that many more people are surviving and living longer with cancer.

The increase in the number of Australians living with and surviving cancer will lead to almost 1.9 million Australians living with a personal history of cancer by 2040.

For statistics on a specific cancer type, see Cancer information.

* incidence data is currently available up until 2015

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The facts and figures above are sourced from the Cancer Institute and Cancer Council Australia.

This information was last reviewed in November 2019
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