Statistics at a Glance
At a Glance
Estimated New Cases in 2021 235,760
% of All New Cancer Cases 12.4%
Estimated Deaths in 2021 131,880
% of All Cancer Deaths 21.7%
|Year||Rate of New Cases — SEER 9||Rate of New Cases — SEER 13||Death Rate — U.S.||5-Year Relative Survival — SEER 9|
|Observed||Modeled Trend||Observed||Modeled Trend||Observed||Modeled Trend||Observed||Modeled Trend|
New cases come from SEER 13. Deaths come from U.S. Mortality.
All Races, Both Sexes. Rates are Age-Adjusted.
Modeled trend lines were calculated from the underlying rates using the Joinpoint Trend Analysis Software.
New cases are also referred to as incident cases in other publications. Rates of new cases are also referred to as incidence rates.
Rate of New Cases and Deaths per 100,000: The rate of new cases of lung and bronchus cancer was 53.1 per 100,000 men and women per year. The death rate was 38.5 per 100,000 men and women per year. These rates are age-adjusted and based on 2014–2018 cases and deaths.
Lifetime Risk of Developing Cancer: Approximately 6.1 percent of men and women will be diagnosed with lung and bronchus cancer at some point during their lifetime, based on 2016–2018 data.
Prevalence of This Cancer: In 2018, there were an estimated 582,631 people living with lung and bronchus cancer in the United States.
How Many People Survive 5 Years Or More after Being Diagnosed with Lung and Bronchus Cancer?
Relative survival is an estimate of the percentage of patients who would be expected to survive the effects of their cancer. It excludes the risk of dying from other causes. 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.
Based on data from SEER 18 2011–2017. Gray figures represent those who have died from lung and bronchus cancer. Green figures represent those who have survived 5 years or more.
Survival by Stage
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, 17.8% are diagnosed at the local stage. The 5-year relative survival for localized lung and bronchus cancer is 59.8%.
|Stage||Percent of Cases||5-Year Relative Survival|
Confined to Primary Site
Spread to Regional Lymph Nodes
Cancer Has Metastasized
SEER 18 2011–2017, All Races, Both Sexes by SEER Summary Stage 2000
New Cases and Deaths
How Common Is This Cancer?
Compared to other cancers, lung and bronchus cancer is fairly common.
|Rank||Common Types of Cancer||Estimated New
|1.||Breast Cancer (Female)||281,550||43,600|
|3.||Lung and Bronchus Cancer||235,760||131,880|
|5.||Melanoma of the Skin||106,110||7,180|
|8.||Kidney and Renal Pelvis Cancer||76,080||13,780|
Lung and bronchus cancer represents 12.4% of all new cancer cases in the U.S.
In 2021, it is estimated that there will be 235,760 new cases of lung and bronchus cancer and an estimated 131,880 people will die of this disease.
Who Gets This Cancer?
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 rate of new cases of lung and bronchus cancer was 53.1 per 100,000 men and women per year based on 2014–2018 cases, age-adjusted.
|American Indian/Alaska Native||40.9|
|American Indian/Alaska Native||35.5|
SEER 21 2014–2018, Age-Adjusted
|Age Range||Percent of New Cases|
Lung and bronchus cancer is most frequently diagnosed among people aged 65–74.
SEER 21 2014–2018, All Races, Both Sexes
Who Dies From This Cancer?
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 death rate was 38.5 per 100,000 men and women per year based on 2014–2018 deaths, age-adjusted.
|American Indian/Alaska Native||38.4|
|American Indian/Alaska Native||27.4|
U.S. 2014–2018, Age-Adjusted
|Age Range||Percent of Deaths|
The percent of lung and bronchus cancer deaths is highest among people aged 65–74.
U.S. 2014–2018, All Races, Both Sexes
Trends in Rates
Changes Over Time
Keeping track 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, age-adjusted rates for new lung and bronchus cancer cases have been falling on average 2.2% each year over 2009–2018. Age-adjusted death rates have been falling on average 3.6% each year over 2009–2018. 5-year relative survival trends are shown below.
Interactive Statistics with SEER*Explorer
- Create custom graphs and tables
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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 Lung and Bronchus Cancer Statistics
More About This Cancer
Cancer and the Lung
Figure: 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.
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.
- Adenocarcinoma: Cancer that begins in the cells that line the alveoli and make substances such as mucus.
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.
Here are some resources for learning more about lung cancer.
- More about risk factors for lung cancer
- More about symptoms and diagnosis of lung cancer
- More about treatment options for lung cancer
- More about clinical trials
- More about cancer prevention
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.
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 Stat Facts: Lung and Bronchus Cancer. National Cancer Institute. Bethesda, MD, https://seer.cancer.gov/statfacts/html/lungb.html
These stat facts focus on population statistics that are based on the U.S. 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 SEER*Explorer. To see statistics for a specific state, go to the State Cancer Profiles.
The statistics presented in these stat facts are based on the most recent data available, most of which can be found in SEER*Explorer. In some cases, different year spans may be used.
Estimates of new cases and deaths for 2021 are projections made by the American Cancer Society (ACS), based on earlier reported data.
Cancer is a complex topic. There is a wide range of information available. These stat facts do not address causes, symptoms, diagnosis, treatment, follow-up care, or decision making, although links are provided to information in many of these areas.