SEER Stat Fact Sheets: Lung and Bronchus Cancer

Statistics at a GlanceShow More

At a Glance

  • Estimated New Cases in 2015 221,200
  • % of All New Cancer Cases13.3%
  • Estimated Deaths in 2015 158,040
  • % of All
    Cancer Deaths
    26.8%

Percent Surviving
5 Years

17.4% 2005-2011

Number of New Cases and Deaths per 100,000: The number of new cases of lung and bronchus cancer was 58.7 per 100,000 men and women per year. The number of deaths was 47.2 per 100,000 men and women per year. These rates are age-adjusted and based on 2008-2012 cases and deaths.

Lifetime Risk of Developing Cancer: Approximately 6.6 percent of men and women will be diagnosed with lung and bronchus cancer at some point during their lifetime, based on 2010-2012 data.

Prevalence of This Cancer: In 2012, there were an estimated 408,808 people living with lung and bronchus cancer in the United States.

Survival StatisticsShow More

How Many People Survive 5 Years Or More after Being Diagnosed with Lung and Bronchus Cancer?

Relative survivalExternal Web Site Policy statistics compare the survival of patients diagnosed with cancer with the survival of people in the general population who are the same age, race, and sex and who have not been diagnosed with cancer. Because survival statistics are based on large groups of people, they cannot be used to predict exactly what will happen to an individual patient. No two patients are entirely alike, and treatment and responses to treatment can vary greatly.

17.4%

Percent Surviving
5 Years

17.4%

Based on data from SEER 18 2005-2011. Gray figures represent those who have died from lung and bronchus cancer. Green figures represent those who have survived 5 years or more.

Additional Information

Cancer stage at diagnosis, which refers to extent of a cancer in the body, determines treatment options and has a strong influence on the length of survival. In general, if the cancer is found only in the part of the body where it started it is localized (sometimes referred to as stage 1). If it has spread to a different part of the body, the stage is regional or distant. The earlier lung and bronchus cancer is caught, the better chance a person has of surviving five years after being diagnosed. For lung and bronchus cancer, 15.6% are diagnosed at the local stage. The 5-year survival for localized lung and bronchus cancer is 54.8%.

Percent of Cases & 5-Year Relative Survival by Stage at Diagnosis: Lung and Bronchus Cancer
Percent of Cases by Stage
  • Localized (16%)
    Confined to Primary Site
  • Regional (22%)
    Spread to Regional Lymph Nodes
  • Distant (57%)
    Cancer Has Metastasized
  • Unknown (5%)
    Unstaged
16% localized; 22% regional; 57% distant; 5% unknown
5-Year Relative Survival
54.8% localized; 27.4% regional; 4.2% distant; 7.5% unstaged

SEER 18 2005-2011, All Races, Both Sexes by SEER Summary Stage 2000

Additional Information

Number of New Cases and DeathsShow More

How Common Is This Cancer?

Compared to other cancers, lung and bronchus cancer is fairly common.

Common Types of Cancer Estimated New
Cases 2015
Estimated
Deaths 2015
1. Breast Cancer (Female) 231,840 40,290
2. Lung and Bronchus Cancer 221,200 158,040
3. Prostate Cancer 220,800 27,540
4. Colon and Rectum Cancer 132,700 49,700
5. Bladder Cancer 74,000 16,000
6. Melanoma of the Skin 73,870 9,940
7. Non-Hodgkin Lymphoma 71,850 19,790
8. Thyroid Cancer 62,450 1,950
9. Kidney and Renal Pelvis Cancer 61,560 14,080
10. Endometrial Cancer 54,870 10,170

Lung and bronchus cancer represents 13.3% of all new cancer cases in the U.S.

13.3%

In 2015, it is estimated that there will be 221,200 new cases of lung and bronchus cancer and an estimated 158,040 people will die of this disease.

Lung cancer is more common in men than women, particularly African American men. Smoking is widely recognized as the leading cause of lung cancer. The number of new cases of lung and bronchus cancer was 58.7 per 100,000 men and women per year based on 2008-2012 cases.

Percent of New Cases by Age Group: Lung and Bronchus Cancer
0.0% under 20; 0.3% 20-34; 1.2% 35-44; 8.4% 45-54; 21.4% 55-64; 31.9% 65-74; 27.6% 75-84; 9.1% 85 and older

Lung and bronchus cancer is most frequently diagnosed among people aged 65-74.

Median Age
At Diagnosis

70

SEER 18 2008-2012, All Races, Both Sexes

Number of New Cases per 100,000 Persons by Race/Ethnicity & Sex: Lung and Bronchus Cancer
MalesFemales
  • Male 70.1All RacesFemale 50.2
  • Male 70.3WhiteFemale 52.7
  • Male 90.9BlackFemale 50.8
  • Male 49.0Asian /
    Pacific Islander
    Female 28.5
  • Male 47.6American Indian /
    Alaska Native
    Female 34.5
  • Male 37.9HispanicFemale 25.1
  • Male 74.2Non-HispanicFemale 53.5

SEER 18 2008-2012, Age-Adjusted

Death rates for lung cancer are higher among the middle-aged and older populations. Lung and bronchus cancer is the first leading cause of cancer death in the United States. The number of deaths was 47.2 per 100,000 men and women per year based on 2008-2012 deaths.

Percent of Deaths by Age Group: Lung and Bronchus Cancer
0.0% under 20; 0.1% 20-34; 0.9% 35-44; 7.6% 45-54; 19.8% 55-64; 30.8% 65-74; 29.4% 75-84; 11.5% 85 and older

The percent of lung and bronchus cancer deaths is highest among people aged 65-74.

Median Age
At Death

72

U.S. 2008-2012, All Races, Both Sexes

Number of Deaths per 100,000 Persons by Race/Ethnicity & Sex: Lung and Bronchus Cancer
MalesFemales
  • Male 59.8All RacesFemale 37.8
  • Male 59.7WhiteFemale 39.1
  • Male 73.1BlackFemale 35.8
  • Male 34.0Asian /
    Pacific Islander
    Female 18.2
  • Male 49.1American Indian /
    Alaska Native
    Female 32.1
  • Male 29.5HispanicFemale 13.7
  • Male 62.3Non-HispanicFemale 39.9

U.S. 2008-2012, Age-Adjusted

Trends in RatesShow More

Changes Over Time

Keeping track of the number of new cases, deaths, and survival over time (trends) can help scientists understand whether progress is being made and where additional research is needed to address challenges, such as improving screening or finding better treatments.

Using statistical models for analysis, rates for new lung and bronchus cancer cases have been falling on average 1.7% each year over the last 10 years. Death rates have not changed significantly over 2002-2012. 5-year survival trends are shown below the figure.

More About This CancerShow More

Cancer and the Lung

Respiratory anatomy; drawing shows right lung with upper, middle, and lower lobes; left lung with upper and lower lobes; and the trachea, bronchi, lymph nodes, and diaphragm. Inset shows bronchioles, alveoli, artery, and vein.
Figure: Respiratory Anatomy
Click to enlarge.

There are two main categories of lung cancer: non-small cell lung cancer and small cell lung cancer. Each type of non-small cell lung cancer has different of cancer cells, which grow and spread in different ways:

  • Squamous cell carcinoma (also called epidermoid carcinoma).
  • Large cell carcinoma: Cancer that may begin in several types of large cells.
  • AdenocarcinomaExternal Web Site Policy: Cancer that begins in the cells that line the alveoli and make substances such as mucus.

Other less common types of non-small cell lung cancer are: pleomorphicExternal Web Site Policy, carcinoidExternal Web Site Policy tumor, salivary gland carcinoma, and unclassified carcinoma.

There are two main types of small cell lung cancer, again according to cell type: small cell carcinoma (oat cell cancer) and combined small cell carcinoma.

Additional Information

More Information

Here are some resources for learning more about lung cancer.

References

All statistics in this report are based on statistics from SEER and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's National Center for Health Statistics. Most can be found within:

Howlader N, Noone AM, Krapcho M, Garshell J, Miller D, Altekruse SF, Kosary CL, Yu M, Ruhl J, Tatalovich Z,Mariotto A, Lewis DR, Chen HS, Feuer EJ, Cronin KA (eds). SEER Cancer Statistics Review, 1975-2012, National Cancer Institute. Bethesda, MD, http://seer.cancer.gov/csr/1975_2012/, based on November 2014 SEER data submission, posted to the SEER web site, April 2015.

Suggested Citation

All material in this report is in the public domain and may be reproduced or copied without permission; citation as to source, however, is appreciated.

SEER Cancer Statistics Factsheets: Lung and Bronchus Cancer. National Cancer Institute. Bethesda, MD, http://seer.cancer.gov/statfacts/html/lungb.html

This factsheet focuses on population statistics that are based on the US population. Because these statistics are based on large groups of people, they cannot be used to predict exactly what will happen to an individual patient. To see tailored statistics, browse the SEER Cancer Statistics Review. To see statistics for a specific state, go to the State Cancer ProfilesExternal Web Site Policy.

The statistics presented in this factsheet are based on the most recent data available, most of which can be found in the SEER Cancer Statistics Review. In some cases, different year spans may be used. Estimates for the current year are based on past data.

Cancer is a complex topic. There is a wide range of information available. This factsheet does not address causes, symptoms, diagnosis, treatment, follow-up care, or decision making, although it provides links to information in many of these areas.