Statistics at a Glance

At a Glance

Breast, lung and bronchus, prostate, and colorectal cancers account for almost 50% of all new cancer cases in the United States. Lung and bronchus, colorectal, pancreatic, and breast cancers are responsible for nearly 50% of all deaths.

New Cancer Cases, 2021
Breast 284,200 (15%)
Prostate 248,530 (13%)
Lung & Bronchus 235,760 (12%)
Colon and rectum 149,500 (8%)
Other 980,170 (52%)
Cancer Deaths, 2021
Lung & Bronchus 131,880 (22%)
Colon and rectum 52,980 (9%)
Pancreas 48,220 (8%)
Breast 44,130 (7%)
Other 331,360 (54%)

How Many People Are Diagnosed with Cancer Each Year?

In 2021, roughly 1.9 million people will be diagnosed with cancer in the United States. An estimated 281,550 women and 2,650 men will be diagnosed with breast cancer, which makes it the most common cancer diagnosis. Prostate cancer is the leading cancer diagnosis among men and the second most common diagnosis overall with 248,530 expected cases. Lung and bronchus cancer is the third most common cancer diagnosis with an estimated 235,760 new cases.

The top 12 most common cancer sites, shown below, will account for more than three quarters of all new cancer cases.

Male
Breast 2,650
Prostate 248,530
Lung & Bronchus 119,100
Colorectal 79,520
Melanoma of the Skin 62,260
Urinary Bladder 64,280
Non-Hodgkin Lymphoma 45,630
Kidney and Renal Pelvis 48,780
Uterus 0
Leukemia 35,530
Pancreas 31,950
Thyroid 12,150
Female
Breast 281,550
Prostate 0
Lung & Bronchus 116,660
Colorectal 69,980
Melanoma of the Skin 43,850
Urinary Bladder 19,450
Non-Hodgkin Lymphoma 35,930
Kidney and Renal Pelvis 27,300
Corpus & Uterus, NOS 66,570
Leukemia 25,560
Pancreas 28,480
Thyroid 32,130

Source: Cancer Facts & Figures 2021, American Cancer Society (ACS), Atlanta, Georgia, 2021.

How Many People Die of Cancer Each Year?

In 2021, an estimated 608,570 people will die of cancer in the United States. Lung and bronchus cancer is responsible for the most deaths with 131,880 people expected to die from this disease. That is nearly three times the 52,980 deaths due to colorectal cancer, which is the second most common cause of cancer death. Pancreatic cancer is the third deadliest cancer, causing 48,220 deaths.

The eight deadliest cancer sites, shown below, will account for almost two-thirds of all expected cancer deaths.

Male
Lung and bronchus 69,410
Colon and rectum 28,520
Pancreas 25,270
Breast 530
Prostate 34,130
Liver & Intrahepatic Bile Duct 20,300
Leukemia 13,900
Non-Hodgkin Lymphoma 12,170
Female
Lung and bronchus 62,470
Colon and rectum 24,460
Pancreas 22,950
Breast 43,600
Prostate 0
Liver & Intrahepatic Bile Duct 9,930
Leukemia 9,760
Non-Hodgkin Lymphoma 8,550

Source: Cancer Facts & Figures 2021, American Cancer Society (ACS), Atlanta, Georgia, 2021.

New Cases, Deaths, and Survival

How Do Cancer Rates Compare?

For comparison purposes, new cases and deaths are generally expressed as a rate — the number per 100,000 in the total population. The rate of new cases is known as cancer incidence, and the death rate as mortality. Note that total population changes depending on what group you are looking at, so, for instance, the rate of new cases for females is the rate per 100,000 females in the U.S.

The table below gives the predicted number of new cases and deaths in 2021, the age-adjusted rate of new cases and deaths over the most recent five years of data, and the five-year relative survival rate, representing the percent surviving their cancer diagnosis 5-years after diagnosis.

You can sort on any column by clicking the header.

Site Estimated New Cases (2021) Rate of New Cases (2014–2018) Estimated Deaths (2021) Death Rate (2014–2018) Relative Survival (%) (2011–2017)
Anus 9,090 2.0 1,430 0.3 68.7
Bladder 83,730 19.7 17,200 4.3 77.1
Bone and Joint 3,610 1.0 2,060 0.5 66.8
Brain and Other Nervous System 24,530 6.4 18,600 4.4 32.6
Breast 284,200 69.1 44,130 11.1 90.2
Cervix Uteri 14,480 7.5 4,290 2.2 66.3
Colon and Rectum 149,500 37.8 52,980 13.7 64.7
Esophagus 19,260 4.2 15,530 3.9 19.9
Hodgkin Lymphoma 8,830 2.6 960 0.3 88.3
Kidney and Renal Pelvis 76,080 16.4 13,780 3.6 75.6
Larynx 12,620 2.8 3,770 0.9 60.7
Leukemia 61,090 14.3 23,660 6.3 65.0
Liver and Intrahepatic Bile Duct 42,230 9.0 30,230 6.6 20.3
Lung and Bronchus 235,760 53.1 131,880 38.5 21.7
Melanoma of the Skin 106,110 22.8 7,180 2.3 93.3
Myeloma 34,920 7.1 12,410 3.2 55.6
Non-Hodgkin Lymphoma 81,560 19.6 20,720 5.4 73.2
Oral Cavity and Pharynx 54,010 11.5 10,850 2.5 66.9
Ovary 21,410 10.9 13,770 6.7 49.1
Pancreas 60,430 13.2 48,220 11.0 10.8
Prostate 248,530 111.3 34,130 19.0 97.5
Small Intestine 11,390 2.4 2,100 0.4 68.3
Stomach 26,560 7.2 11,180 3.0 32.4
Testis 9,470 6.0 440 0.3 94.9
Thyroid 44,280 15.5 2,200 0.5 98.3
Uterus 66,570 28.1 12,940 4.9 81.1
Vulva 6,120 2.6 1,550 0.6 71.1
Site Estimated New Cases (2021) Rate of New Cases (2014–2018) Estimated Deaths (2021) Death Rate (2014–2018) Relative Survival (%) (2011–2017)
Anus 6,070 2.3 870 0.3 71.4
Bladder 19,450 8.5 4,940 2.1 72.6
Bone and Joint 1,510 0.9 870 0.4 69.8
Brain and Other Nervous System 10,690 5.4 8,100 3.6 34.3
Breast 281,550 129.1 43,600 20.1 90.3
Cervix Uteri 14,480 7.5 4,290 2.2 66.3
Colon and Rectum 69,980 33.3 24,460 11.5 65.3
Esophagus 3,950 1.7 3,120 1.4 22.3
Hodgkin Lymphoma 4,000 2.3 390 0.2 89.1
Kidney and Renal Pelvis 27,300 11.2 4,990 2.3 76.8
Larynx 2,680 1.1 750 0.4 57.8
Leukemia 25,560 11.1 9,760 4.7 64.0
Liver and Intrahepatic Bile Duct 12,340 4.9 9,930 4.0 20.9
Lung and Bronchus 116,660 47.9 62,470 32.0 25.4
Melanoma of the Skin 43,850 18.0 2,580 1.4 95.3
Myeloma 15,600 5.7 5,570 2.6 55.5
Non-Hodgkin Lymphoma 35,930 16.2 8,550 4.1 74.6
Oral Cavity and Pharynx 15,210 6.5 3,230 1.3 68.1
Ovary 21,410 10.9 13,770 6.7 49.1
Pancreas 28,480 11.8 22,950 9.6 10.7
Prostate - - - - -
Small Intestine 5,260 2.1 990 0.3 68.6
Stomach 10,400 5.3 4,440 2.2 37.4
Testis - - - - -
Thyroid 32,130 22.8 1,150 0.5 98.9
Uterus 66,570 28.1 12,940 4.9 81.1
Vulva 6,120 2.6 1,550 0.6 71.1
Site Estimated New Cases (2021) Rate of New Cases (2014–2018) Estimated Deaths (2021) Death Rate (2014–2018) Relative Survival (%) (2011–2017)
Anus 3,020 1.6 560 0.2 64.0
Bladder 64,280 34.2 12,260 7.4 78.5
Bone and Joint 2,100 1.2 1,190 0.6 64.5
Brain and Other Nervous System 13,840 7.6 10,500 5.4 31.2
Breast 2,650 1.3 530 0.3 82.4
Cervix Uteri - - - - -
Colon and Rectum 79,520 43.2 28,520 16.3 64.3
Esophagus 15,310 7.3 12,410 6.9 19.3
Hodgkin Lymphoma 4,830 2.9 570 0.4 87.7
Kidney and Renal Pelvis 48,780 22.6 8,790 5.3 74.9
Larynx 9,940 4.9 3,020 1.7 61.4
Leukemia 35,530 18.3 13,900 8.4 65.7
Liver and Intrahepatic Bile Duct 29,890 13.8 20,300 9.7 20.1
Lung and Bronchus 119,100 60.1 69,410 46.9 18.1
Melanoma of the Skin 62,260 29.3 4,600 3.4 91.7
Myeloma 19,320 8.8 6,840 4.1 55.7
Non-Hodgkin Lymphoma 45,630 23.7 12,170 7.0 72.0
Oral Cavity and Pharynx 38,800 17.3 7,620 3.9 66.4
Ovary - - - - -
Pancreas 31,950 15.0 25,270 12.7 10.9
Prostate 248,530 111.3 34,130 19.0 97.5
Small Intestine 6,130 2.8 1,110 0.5 68.0
Stomach 16,160 9.7 6,740 4.0 29.1
Testis 9,470 6.0 440 0.3 94.9
Thyroid 12,150 8.0 1,050 0.5 96.0
Uterus - - - - -
Vulva - - - - -

How Do the Most Common Cancers Compare by Race/Ethnicity?

The rate and type of cancer diagnosis varies significantly by race and ethnicity. The graph below shows the age-adjusted rate of new cases, by race and ethnicity, for the four most commonly diagnosed cancers.

Site All Races White Black API AI/AN Hispanic
Female Breast 129.1 131.8 124.7 105.1 81.7 100.3
Colon and rectum 37.8 37.4 42.6 31.3 38.5 33.7
Lung & Bronchus 53.1 54.9 53.7 35.7 37.7 28.6
Prostate 111.3 104.1 175.8 57.7 53.1 90.9

a Asian & Pacific Islander, b American Indian / Alaska Native
Age-adjusted rates of new cases, SEER 21, 2014–2018

Cancer death rates, or mortality rates, also vary significantly by race and ethnicity. The graph below shows the age-adjusted death rate, by race and ethnicity, for the five most commonly diagnosed cancers.

Site All Races White Black API AI/AN Hispanic
Female Breast 20.1 19.6 27.3 11.7 14.8 13.8
Colon and rectum 13.7 13.4 18.0 9.4 15.1 10.9
Lung & Bronchus 38.5 39.3 40.1 21.2 32.1 16.8
Pancreas 11.0 11.0 13.3 7.5 8.7 8.6
Prostate 19.0 17.9 37.4 8.8 18.5 15.6

a Asian & Pacific Islander, b American Indian / Alaska Native
Age-adjusted death rates, U.S., 2014–2018

Trends in Rates

What Are the Recent Trends in Rates of New Cancer Cases?

Between 2014 and 2018, the overall age-adjusted rate of new cancers remained stable among men and remained stable among women. During this period, nine of the 19 most common cancers in men and eleven of the 21 most common cancers in women showed statistically significant decreases in new cases. For men, laryngeal cancer showed the greatest decrease. For women, ovarian cancer showed the greatest decrease.

Trends In New Cases
Male
Prostate 3.7
Melanoma of the Skin 1.1*
Pancreas 0.9*
Testis 0.8*
Oral Cavity and Pharynx 0.7*
Myeloma 0.3
Kidney and Renal Pelvis 0.3
Brain and Other Nervous System -0.3*
Liver and Intrahepatic Bile Duct -0.4
All Sites -0.6
Leukemia -1.1
Esophagus -1.2*
Stomach -1.4*
Non-Hodgkin Lymphoma -1.4*
Thyroid -1.4
Bladder -1.5*
Hodgkin Lymphoma -1.5*
Colon and Rectum -1.5*
Lung and Bronchus -2.8*
Larynx -3.5*
Female
Uterus 1.2*
Melanoma of the Skin 1.1*
Myeloma 1.0*
Pancreas 0.8*
Kidney and Renal Pelvis 0.7*
Liver and Intrahepatic Bile Duct 0.6
Cervix Uteri 0.5
Breast 0.4*
Oral Cavity and Pharynx 0.3*
All Sites 0.0
Non-Hodgkin Lymphoma -0.3*
Brain and Other Nervous System -0.4*
Stomach -0.5*
Bladder -1.1*
Hodgkin Lymphoma -1.2*
Leukemia -1.3
Lung and Bronchus -1.4*
Esophagus -1.5*
Colon and Rectum -1.5*
Larynx -2.3*
Thyroid -2.8*
Ovary -3.1*

What Are the Recent Trends in Cancer Death Rates?

Between 2014 and 2018, overall age-adjusted death rate decreased on average 2.2 percent per year for men and 1.7 percent for women. During this period, twelve of the 19 most common cancers in men and fifteen of the 21 most common cancers in women showed statistically significant decreases in death rates. Thyroid cancer showed the greatest increase in death rates among men. Uterine cancer showed the greatest increase in death rates among women.

Trends In Death Rates
Male
Thyroid 0.9*
Oral Cavity and Pharynx 0.6*
Liver and Intrahepatic Bile Duct 0.4
Brain and Other Nervous System 0.4*
Pancreas 0.3*
Testis 0.0
Prostate -0.4
Myeloma -0.9*
Bladder -1.3*
Non-Hodgkin Lymphoma -1.9*
Esophagus -1.9*
Colon and Rectum -1.9*
Leukemia -2.1*
All Sites -2.2*
Kidney and Renal Pelvis -2.4*
Stomach -2.5*
Larynx -2.5*
Hodgkin Lymphoma -2.9*
Lung and Bronchus -5.2*
Melanoma of the Skin -5.7*
Female
Uterus 2.0*
Liver and Intrahepatic Bile Duct 1.1*
Brain and Other Nervous System 0.4*
Thyroid 0.2
Pancreas 0.2*
Oral Cavity and Pharynx -0.1
Bladder -0.6*
Cervix Uteri -0.7*
Breast -1.0*
Leukemia -1.4*
Kidney and Renal Pelvis -1.4*
Esophagus -1.6*
All Sites -1.7*
Stomach -1.9*
Myeloma -1.9*
Colon and Rectum -2.0*
Ovary -2.3*
Larynx -2.4*
Non-Hodgkin Lymphoma -2.7*
Lung and Bronchus -4.3*
Melanoma of the Skin -4.3*
Hodgkin Lymphoma -4.9*

Additional Information

Average annual percent change (AAPC) is the year-to-year change averaged over a period of time, in this case, 5 years. Positive AAPC describes an increasing trend and a negative AAPC a decreasing one.

Cancer in Context

How Does Cancer Compare to Other Causes of Death?

Cancer caused 21.1% of all deaths in the United States in 2018. Deaths due to heart disease and cancer caused nearly half of all deaths in the United States. Cancer is the leading cause of death for those under 65 years of age.

Leading Causes of Death in the U.S., 2018
Heart Disease 655,341
Cancer 599,265
Accidents (Unintentional Injury) 167,107
Chronic Lower Respiratory 159,481
Stroke (Cerebrovascular) 147,809
Alzheimer's 122,018
Diabetes 84,940
Pneumonia & Influenze 59,118
Nephritis & Nephrosis 51,383
Intentional Self-Harm (Suicide) 48,344

What Are the U.S. Death Rates?

In the United States, heart disease death rates have decreased for people of all ages. In 1975, heart disease among those less than 65 caused 26% of deaths, compared to 17% in 2018. In those over 65, heart disease caused 44% of deaths in 1975, compared to 25% in 2018.

Neoplasms have slightly increased for people of all ages. In 1975, neoplasms for those less than 65 accounted for 22% of deaths in the United States, compared to 23% in 2018. In those over 65, neoplasms caused 18% of deaths in 1975, compared to 21% in 2018.

Ages <65
Year Heart Disease Cancer
Rate Per 100,000 % of Total Deaths Rate Per 100,000 % of Total Deaths
1975 98.6 26 84.0 22
1976 95.9 26 84.3 23
1977 92.6 26 84.3 23
1978 90.4 26 84.2 24
1979 88.3 26 83.3 24
1980 86.9 26 83.7 24
1981 84.9 26 82.8 25
1982 82.0 26 83.0 26
1983 80.7 26 82.7 26
1984 78.3 25 83.3 26
1985 76.6 25 83.2 26
1986 74.0 24 82.2 26
1987 71.5 23 81.7 26
1988 69.1 22 81.3 26
1989 65.1 21 80.5 26
1990 62.4 21 80.1 26
1991 61.0 20 79.2 26
1992 59.7 20 77.4 26
1993 59.5 20 76.2 26
1994 57.8 20 75.0 26
1995 56.9 20 73.4 25
1996 55.5 20 71.7 26
1997 53.4 21 69.7 27
1998 51.4 20 67.9 27
1999 49.4 20 66.9 27
2000 47.7 19 65.5 27
2001 46.6 19 64.9 26
2002 46.3 19 63.7 26
2003 45.3 19 62.3 26
2004 43.1 19 60.4 26
2005 42.6 18 59.7 26
2006 41.5 18 58.5 26
2007 40.0 18 56.9 26
2008 39.5 18 55.8 26
2009 38.3 18 55.3 26
2010 37.4 18 54.2 27
2011 37.1 18 53.4 26
2012 36.9 18 53.0 26
2013 36.9 18 52.0 26
2014 37.1 18 51.5 25
2015 37.3 18 50.5 25
2016 37.4 17 49.7 24
2017 37.2 17 48.3 23
2018 37.2 17 47.2 23
Ages 65+
Year Heart Disease Cancer
Rate Per 100,000 % of Total Deaths Rate Per 100,000 % of Total Deaths
1975 2734.9 44 995.2 18
1976 2747.4 44 1018.3 18
1977 2656.3 44 1023.3 19
1978 2643.2 44 1035.4 19
1979 2595.8 45 1042.7 19
1980 2652.4 44 1059.1 19
1981 2568.9 44 1060.7 20
1982 2524.7 44 1074.6 20
1983 2532.4 44 1083.5 20
1984 2468.6 43 1093.0 20
1985 2449.2 42 1097.2 20
1986 2389.6 42 1107.5 21
1987 2333.4 41 1111.8 21
1988 2321.1 40 1120.3 21
1989 2184.9 39 1139.1 22
1990 2102.7 39 1147.4 22
1991 2054.6 38 1154.0 23
1992 1995.9 38 1153.7 23
1993 2027.9 37 1161.8 22
1994 1954.3 37 1157.0 23
1995 1927.5 36 1153.6 22
1996 1878.5 36 1142.2 22
1997 1828.4 35 1128.5 22
1998 1791.7 35 1119.6 22
1999 1766.3 34 1125.9 22
2000 1698.3 33 1119.8 22
2001 1648.2 32 1104.4 22
2002 1611.1 32 1097.2 22
2003 1551.7 31 1079.7 22
2004 1449.7 30 1060.8 22
2005 1415.4 30 1053.2 22
2006 1333.7 29 1036.1 22
2007 1268.7 28 1025.1 22
2008 1240.5 28 1009.5 22
2009 1174.6 27 989.8 22
2010 1143.6 27 984.1 22
2011 1114.1 26 966.2 22
2012 1089.0 26 950.5 22
2013 1086.2 26 932.9 21
2014 1064.2 25 921.3 22
2015 1076.8 25 908.2 21
2016 1051.4 25 891.0 21
2017 1049.6 25 873.9 21
2018 1037.9 25 853.3 21

Interactive Statistics with SEER*Explorer

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SEER*Explorer is an interactive website that provides easy access to a wide range of SEER cancer statistics. It provides detailed statistics for a cancer site by gender, race, calendar year, age, and for a selected number of cancer sites, by stage and histology.

Explore Additional Cancer Statistics

More About Cancer Surveillance

More Information

Here are some resources for learning more about cancer surveillance:

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 SEER*Explorer.

Estimates of new cases and deaths for 2021 are projections made by the American Cancer Society (ACS), based on earlier reported data.

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: Common Cancer Sites. National Cancer Institute. Bethesda, MD, https://seer.cancer.gov/statfacts/html/common.html