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Dear Meeomers,


There were an estimated 1·19 million (95% UI 1·11–1·28) incident cancer cases and 396 000 (370 000–425 000) deaths among individuals aged 15–39 years worldwide in 2019 (table). The highest age-standardised incidence rates were seen in high SDI (59·6 [54·5–65·7] per 100 000 person-years) and high-middle SDI (53·2 [48·8–57·9] per 100 000 person-years) countries, while the highest age-standardised mortality rates from cancer in adolescents and young adults were seen in middle SDI (13·6 [12·6–14·8] per 100 000 person-years) and low-middle SDI (14·2 [12·9–15·6] per 100 000 person-years) regions. Adolescent and young adult cancers contributed 23·5 million (21·9–25·2) DALYs to the global burden of disease in 2019, of which 2·7% (1·9–3·6) came from YLDs and 97·3% (96·4–98·1) from YLLs. The majority (91·4% [91·0–91·8]) of the worldwide absolute adolescent and young adult cancer DALY burden is concentrated in non-high SDI (low, low-middle, middle, and high-middle SDI) quintiles. Overall, high SDI settings have the highest age-standardised incidence rate (59·6 [54·5–65·7] per 100 000 person-years), but the lowest age-standardised DALY rate (564·3 [542·8–590·1] per 100 000 person-years). Breast cancer (10·6% [10·0–11·2]), followed by brain and CNS cancer (7·4% [6·0–8·0]), colon and rectum cancer (7·0% [6·6–7·3]), and stomach cancer (6·7% [6·5–7·0]) were the four greatest contributors to the DALY burden globally for both sexes combined, of separately categorised cancers. If leukaemias were considered as a single group, given that they are treated by haematologist-oncologists and have a similar diagnostic approach, rather than as individual leukaemia subtypes, leukaemias would be the largest categorised cancer group contributing to the global cancer DALY burden (12·0% [10·9–12·8]), greater than that of breast cancer. The “other malignant neoplasms” category, the aggregated cancer cause category for cancers not separately estimated in the GBD framework, comprised the highest proportion of the adolescent and young adult cancer DALY burden globally (13·7% [12·8–14·5]).


Each year, the American Cancer Society estimates the numbers of new cancer cases and deaths in the United States and compiles the most recent data on population-based cancer occurrence and outcomes. Incidence data (through 2018) were collected by the Surveillance, Epidemiology, and End Results program; the National Program of Cancer Registries; and the North American Association of Central Cancer Registries. Mortality data (through 2019) were collected by the National Center for Health Statistics. In 2022, 1,918,030 new cancer cases and 609,360 cancer deaths are projected to occur in the United States, including approximately 350 deaths per day from lung cancer, the leading cause of cancer death. Incidence during 2014 through 2018 continued a slow increase for female breast cancer (by 0.5% annually) and remained stable for prostate cancer, despite a 4% to 6% annual increase for advanced disease since 2011. Consequently, the proportion of prostate cancer diagnosed at a distant stage increased from 3.9% to 8.2% over the past decade. In contrast, lung cancer incidence continued to decline steeply for advanced disease while rates for localized-stage increased suddenly by 4.5% annually, contributing to gains both in the proportion of localized-stage diagnoses (from 17% in 2004 to 28% in 2018) and 3-year relative survival (from 21% to 31%). Mortality patterns reflect incidence trends, with declines accelerating for lung cancer, slowing for breast cancer, and stabilizing for prostate cancer. In summary, progress has stagnated for breast and prostate cancers but strengthened for lung cancer, coinciding with changes in medical practice related to cancer screening and/or treatment. More targeted cancer control interventions and investment in improved early detection and treatment would facilitate reductions in cancer mortality.


Data sharing
To download the data used in these analyses, please visit the Global Health Data Exchange GBD 2019 website at


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1. AW Smith, NL Seibel, DR Lewis, et al.
Next steps for adolescent and young adult oncology workshop: an update on progress and recommendations for the future
Cancer, 122 (2016), pp. 988-999

2. Dr. Saab 
Burden of cancer in adolescents and young adults
The Lancet Oncology, Volume 23, Issue 1, January 2022, Pages 2-3

3. National Cancer Institute, National Institutes of Health, Livestrong Young Adult Alliance
Adolescent and Young Adult Oncology Progress Review Group. Closing the gap: research and care imperatives for adolescents and young adults with cancer (2006), Accessed 1st Nov 2021

4. A Ferrari, D Stark, FA Peccatori, et al.
Adolescents and young adults (AYA) with cancer: a position paper from the AYA Working Group of the European Society for Medical Oncology (ESMO) and the European Society for Paediatric Oncology (SIOPE)
ESMO Open, 6 (2021), p. 100096

5. Rebecca L. Siegel MPH,Kimberly D. Miller MPH,Hannah E. Fuchs BS,Ahmedin Jemal DVM, PhD
Cancer statistics, 2022
First published: 12 January 2022 49

6. MM Fidler, S Gupta, I Soerjomataram, J Ferlay, E Steliarova-Foucher, F Bray
Cancer incidence and mortality among young adults aged 20–39 years worldwide in 2012: a population-based study
Lancet Oncol, 18 (2017), pp. 1579-1589

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