The Top 5 European Countries with the Highest Incidence of Breast Cancer

  Country Breast Cancer Rate
(per 100,000)
1 Belgium 109.2
2 Denmark 101.1
3 France 99.7
4 The Netherlands 98.5
5 Iceland 95.5
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 Special Report
  1. Belgium has the highest incidence rate of cancer in Europe and it also has the highest incidence rate in the world. About 9,700 women in Belgium are diagnosed with breast cancer every year, or 109 per 100,000, compared to 93.5 10 years ago. Some 2,500 women die of breast cancer every year in Belgium. The rate of diagnosis is higher than any other country but, as experts reacting to the figures explained: “Breast cancer is a typical disease of prosperity,” said Erik Van Limbergen, head of oncology at Leuven University Hospital. Cancer as a whole is generally a disease of middle age to later life, which means that as life spans increase, so do cancer rates. (b.).
  2. Breast cancer is by far the most frequent cancer among women with an estimated 1.38 million new cancer cases diagnosed in 2008 (23% of all cancers), and ranks second overall (10.9% of all cancers).
  3. Breast cancer is now the most common cancer both in developed and developing regions with around 690 000 new cases estimated in each region (population ratio 1:4). (a.)
  4. The range of mortality rates for breast cancer is much less (approximately 6-19 per 100,000) because of the more favourable survival of breast cancer in (high-incidence) developed regions. As a result, breast cancer ranks as the fifth cause of death from cancer overall (458 000 deaths), but it is still the most frequent cause of cancer death in women in both developing (269 000 deaths, 12.7% of total) and developed regions, where the estimated 189 000 deaths is almost equal to the estimated number of deaths from lung cancer (188 000 deaths). (a.)
  5. In the United States in 2009, approximately 40,170 women were expected to die from breast cancer. Only lung cancer accounts for more cancer deaths in women. In addition, about 1,910 cases of breast cancer are expected to occur among men in the United States, accounting for about 1% of all breast cancers. Approximately 440 men die from breast cancer in the United States every year. (b.)
Top 5 facts sources:
  1. GLOBOCAN 2008. (2012). "Cancer Incidence and Mortality Worldwide:" IARC CancerBase No. 10 [Internet]. Retrieved May 28th, 2012.
  2. Flanders Today. (2012). "Breast cancer rates highest in Europe." Retrieved May 28th, 2012.
Tags: Top 5 Highest, Europe, Cancer statistics, France

Sources:  GLOBOCAN 2008, Cancer Incidence and Mortality Worldwide: IARC CancerBase No. 10 [Internet].

List Notes: Data is female breast cancer incidence rate (age-standardized) per 100,000 population in Europe for the year 2008 or latest available data. An age-standardized rate is the rate that a population would have if it had a standard age structure. Standardization is necessary when comparing several populations that differ with respect to age because age has a powerful influence on the risk of cancer. (list last updated by top 5 of Anything: May 28th, 2012).
European Countries with the Highest Incidence of Breast Cancer

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