Lung cancer will likely be 2022's deadliest cancer, with estimates holding it responsible for almost a quarter of all cancer deaths in Canada.
Colorectal, pancreatic and breast cancer are estimated to be the subsequent deadliest cancers, respectively, according to a new joint study by Statistics Canada, the Canadian Cancer Society and the Public Health Agency of Canada.
The study estimates these four cancers will be responsible for 46 per cent of all diagnoses.
Canada's increasing population in numbers and age are partly why cancer numbers are climbing.
"This year, an estimated 233,900 people in Canada will be diagnosed with cancer, and 85,100 cancer-related deaths are expected," states StatsCan in a press release.
Across the country, cancer is the leading cause of death. The data shows that 43 per cent of Canadians are likely to receive a cancer diagnosis, according to previous estimates. It also projects that this diagnosis rate will be seven per cent higher in males than females.
In terms of mortality rates, males are expected to have a death rate 13 per cent higher than females.
B.C. leads with the lowest projected cancer rates
In B.C., projected cancer incidence rates are lower than in any other province, according to the data.
Breast cancer has the highest projected incidence rate among British Columbians, with lung, prostate and colorectal following it, respectively.
Despite these daunting numbers, the data shows that overall cancer rates in Canada are declining, and the number of cancer survivors is increasing.
The data states that mortality rates for lung, prostate and colorectal cancer have dropped over the past two decades. Breast cancer rates among females are also on a downward trend.
"Canadians diagnosed with cancer today have on average better odds of living longer than those diagnosed a decade earlier," says StatsCan.
This can be attributed largely to ongoing cancer prevention, screening and treatment efforts, the study states.
However, due to rising lung cancer incidence rates, the study also states that discouragement of tobacco consumption needs to remain a priority in Canada. Additionally, screening rates across Canada, particularly in minority populations, need to be improved upon, the study recommends.
While some cancers continue to face difficulties with early detection, such as pancreatic cancer, which sees 60 per cent of its cases diagnosed at a late stage, the study notes that other advanced cancer benefit from today's technology.
"Survival and mortality for lung and hematologic cancers have improved considerably since the 1990s with the advent of targeted therapies, immunotherapies, advances in radiotherapy and surgery," the study states.