Lung cancer in Australia in 2011: an overview (AIHW)

The rate of new cases of lung cancer among women has risen while the rates for men have fallen, according to a new report by the Australian Institute of Health and Welfare (AIHW) and Cancer Australia. Lung cancer in Australia in 2011 : an overview is the first comprehensive summary of national statistics on lung cancer in Australia.

"The report shows the number of new lung cancers increased markedly in both sexes between 1982 and 2007," said AIHW spokesperson Chris Sturrock. "But when the age structure and size of the population are taken into account, lung cancer incidence fell by 32%in men but rose by 72% in women."

The differing directions in lung cancer incidence rates in men and women may be attributed to historical differences in smoking behaviour, with smoking rates in men decreasing since the 1960s but rates not decreasing until the 1970s for women.

Data in this report provide a comprehensive picture of lung cancer in Australia including how lung cancer rates differ by geographical area, socioeconomic status, Indigenous status and country of birth.

Media release

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