In a new study, researchers from the International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC) and partner institutions provide a global overview of the burden of breast cancer in 2020 and estimate the impact this disease will have in 2040. The authors predict that by 2040 the breast cancer burden will increase to more than 3 million new cases per year (an increase of 40%) and more than 1 million deaths per year (an increase of 50%). The study was published in the journal The Breast.
Breast cancer is the most commonly diagnosed cancer type, accounting for 1 in 8 cancer diagnoses worldwide. In 2020, there were about 2.3 million new cases of breast cancer globally and about 685 000 deaths from this disease, with large geographical variations observed between countries and world regions. Breast cancer incidence rates are highest in countries that have undergone economic transition, but transitioning countries carry a disproportionate share of breast cancer deaths.
IARC is part of the World Health Organization (WHO) Global Breast Cancer Initiative. Through this initiative, WHO, IARC, and collaborators aim to reduce breast cancer mortality by fostering timely diagnosis and adequate treatment and patient management. As a foundation for these efforts, a good understanding of global patterns and variations in the disease burden is vital. This new study emphasizes the need for global efforts to counteract the growing burden of breast cancer, especially in transitioning countries where incidence rates are rising rapidly and mortality rates remain high.
Arnold M, Morgan E, Rumgay H, Mafra A, Singh D, Laversanne M, et al.
Current and future burden of breast cancer: global statistics for 2020 and 2040
Breast, Published online 2 September 2022;