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Cancer rates higher in North West

People living in the north west of England are 11.5% more likely to be diagnosed with cancer than those living in London, according to newly-released figures.

Official statistics for England also show that the cancer incidence rate in women has increased at nearly three times the rate of men over the last decade, rising by 8.3% in women compared with 2.8% in men, although far fewer women are still being diagnosed.

In 2004 the rate was 664.8 males per 100,000 people, which went up to 683.1 in 2013.

In females the rate was 500.7 cases per 100,000 people in 2004, compared with 542.2 in 2013.

The Office for National Statistics (ONS) said different types of cancer were more prevalent in certain parts of the country.

The prostate cancer incidence rate was 30.5% higher in the South East compared with the North East while the incidence rate for female breast cancer was 10.7% higher in the South West than in London.

Lung cancer rates in males were 50.8% higher in the North East of England (116.7 cases per 100,000 males) compared with the South East (77.4 cases per 100,000 males).

They were also double that of women in the North East (102.2 cases per 100,000 females) compared with the South East (50.5 cases per 100,000 females).

The ONS said differences could be due to a number of factors, such as levels of deprivation and lifestyle behaviours such as smoking.

Nearly a quarter of adults in the North East are smokers, according to recent figures, while the North West and Yorkshire and the Humber also have a high number of smokers.

Leukaemia, brain, non-Hodgkin's lymphoma (males), and kidney (females) were the most common cancers in children aged 0-14, accounting for more than half of the 1,359 cases registered in children in 2013.

In males aged 15 to 49, testicular, skin melanoma, and bowel cancer were the three most common cancers registered, while breast, skin melanoma and cervical cancer were the most common in women.

In people over the age of 50, there were more cases of prostate, breast, lung, and colorectal cancer.

The ONS pointed out that cancer is a disease of the ageing, with half (49.9%) of cases registered in those aged 70 and above.

A Department of Health spokeswoman said: "An ageing population means the NHS is seeing more cancer patients than ever before. Despite this, survival rates are at a record high.

"We want to be the best in the world for cancer care and know early diagnosis is crucial.

"We are working to raise awareness and help the public spot the signs of cancer as early as possible. The independent Cancer Taskforce, led by Cancer Research UK, will also help us improve survival rates even further. "


From Belfast Telegraph