Health $ Lifestyle

How more than a third of cancers are diagnosed in the over-75s: Fascinating graph reveals the most common types by age

A third of all cancers are diagnosed in over-75s, according to Cancer Research UK analysis.

More than 375,000 cases are detected every year in Britain, the equivalent of 1,000 each day.

Cancers of the breast, prostate, lung and bowel make-up the overwhelming majority, accounting for around half in total. 

But certain types of cancer — which can grow virtually anywhere in the body — are more rife at different ages.

For example, prostate cancer is the most common form among men over the age of 50.

In women, breast takes top spot for the same age groups. 

Yet, according to data compiled by MailOnline into a fascinating interactive tool, the most common types in children and young people are brain tumours, leukaemia and lymphoma. 

Buckingham Palace last night revealed that King Charles has an unspecified form of cancer. 

It was found during treatment for his enlarged prostate. The 75-year-old doesn’t have prostate cancer — the most common type among elderly men.

Prime Minister Rishi Sunak said this morning he was ‘shocked and sad’ to hear about the diagnosis. However, he was ‘thankful’ it had been ‘caught early’.

Figures suggest around one in two people will develop some form of cancer during their lifetime. 

According to Cancer Research UK, a third of all cases in the UK are preventable. 

Last year bowel cancer overtook lung to become the third most common type of the disease, striking 41,000 patients in 2021 in England. 

Only breast (almost 50,000) and prostate (43,000) sickened more. 

Fewer than 40,000 cases of lung cancer were detected, for comparison.  

Officials think more people getting tested — inspired by high profile cases like that of Dame Deborah James — has helped fuel diagnosis rates.

Last month Sarah Ferguson revealed that she had been diagnosed with malignant melanoma, the fifth most common type of cancer.

The Duchess of York, 64, is said to be in ‘good spirits’ despite the ‘distressing’ news, which marked her second cancer diagnosis in six months after she was treated for breast cancer last year. 

Non-Hodgkin lymphoma, kidney, pancreas, bladder, and lip, oral cavity and pharynx are among the other ten most common cancers in the UK. 

The first sign that anything was amiss with King Charles’ health came on January 17 when Buckingham Palace made a surprise announcement that the King had ‘sought treatment’ for an enlarged prostate.

He chose to go public about his prostate treatment, with the aim of encouraging more men to get prostate checks, the palace said at the time. 

Yesterday, palace officials also revealed he chose to share his cancer diagnosis in the hope it would ‘assist public understanding for all those around the world who are affected by cancer’.  

For many types of cancer, the chance of getting it increases with age. 

Buckingham Palace last night revealed that King Charles has an unspecified form of cancer. It was found during treatment for his enlarged prostate. The 75-year-old doesn't have prostate cancer ¿ the most common type among elderly men. Above: Charles was last seen waving to well-wishers as he attended a service with his wife Queen Camilla at St Mary Magdalene Church in Sandringham, Norfolk, on Sunday

Buckingham Palace last night revealed that King Charles has an unspecified form of cancer. It was found during treatment for his enlarged prostate. The 75-year-old doesn’t have prostate cancer — the most common type among elderly men. Above: Charles was last seen waving to well-wishers as he attended a service with his wife Queen Camilla at St Mary Magdalene Church in Sandringham, Norfolk, on Sunday

Yesterday, Buckingham Palace revealed King Charles chose to share his cancer diagnosis in the hope it would 'assist public understanding for all those around the world who are affected by cancer'

Yesterday, Buckingham Palace revealed King Charles chose to share his cancer diagnosis in the hope it would ‘assist public understanding for all those around the world who are affected by cancer’ 

Last month Sarah Ferguson (pictured in December) revealed she had been diagnosed with malignant melanoma. The Duchess of York , 64, is said to be in 'good spirits' despite the 'distressing' news which marks her second cancer diagnosis in six months after she was treated for breast cancer last year

Last month Sarah Ferguson (pictured in December) revealed she had been diagnosed with malignant melanoma. The Duchess of York , 64, is said to be in ‘good spirits’ despite the ‘distressing’ news which marks her second cancer diagnosis in six months after she was treated for breast cancer last year

UK figures suggest more than a third (36 per cent) of new cancer cases on average are in people aged 75 and over.

Adults aged 50 to 75, meanwhile, account for more than half (54 per cent) of all new cases.

Those aged 25 to 49 contribute to around a tenth (9 per cent) of new cases, with almost twice as many women than men diagnosed in this age group. 

In October, a startling analysis — branded a ‘wake-up call’ — found cancer now robs Brits of 14 years of life on average.

For comparison, this is one extra year than for patients diagnosed in the 1980s. And experts predict it could get even worse. 

In the first analysis of its kind, researchers discovered more than two million years of life are lost to cancer in the UK every year. 

But researchers who conducted the analysis said the data somewhat paradoxically demonstrated the success of Britain’s cancer screening programmes. 

While the level of progress for cancer survival for some forms of the disease has been rapid, such as for breast and prostate cancers, others, like those for lung and pancreas have only improved at a snail's pace

While the level of progress for cancer survival for some forms of the disease has been rapid, such as for breast and prostate cancers, others, like those for lung and pancreas have only improved at a snail’s pace

Experts told MailOnline this was likely due to a broad rise in life expectancy, meaning a cancer diagnosis now is robbing people of a greater portion of their lifespan than it did some 30 years ago. 

The boost in overall life expectancy in the population left people with ‘more to lose’ from the disease. 

NHS cancer services are repeatedly failing to achieve their targets. 

Latest official health service data on cancer waiting times show that just six in ten (65.2 per cent) cancer patients were seen within the two-month target in November. 

NHS guidelines state 85 per cent of cancer patients should be seen within this timeframe. 

It comes as world health leaders last week also warned cancer deaths in the UK are set to soar by more than 50 per cent by 2050.

A rising and ageing population – combined with unhealthy lifestyles – are set to fuel a surge in cases.

The World Health Organization predicts there will be tens of thousands more cases and deaths in Britain each year than previously estimated.

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