Prostate cancer in Australia

Prostate cancer incorporates ICD–10 cancer code C61. 

Prostate cancer was the most commonly diagnosed cancer in Australia in 2013. In 2013, it was also the most commonly diagnosed cancer among males. It is estimated to become the third most commonly diagnosed cancer in 2017, while remaining the most commonly diagnosed cancer among males.

In 2013, there were 19,233 new cases of prostate cancer diagnosed in Australia. In 2017, it is estimated that 16,665 new cases of prostate cancer will be diagnosed in Australia.

In 2013, the age–standardised incidence rate was 151 cases per 100,000 males. In 2017, it is estimated that the age–standardised incidence rate will be 115 cases per 100,000 males. The incidence rate of prostate cancer among males will increase from age group 35–39 until age group 65–69. It will then decrease until age group 80–84 before increasing for males aged 85+.

In 2017, it is estimated that the risk of a male being diagnosed with prostate cancer by his 85th birthday will be 1 in 7.

The number of new cases of prostate cancer diagnosed increased from 3,607 in 1982 to 19,233 in 2013. Over the same period, the age–standardised incidence rate increased from 80 cases per 100,000 males in 1982 to 151 cases per 100,000 males in 2013.

Estimated most common cancers diagnosed in 2017

Cancer type New cases 2017 % of all new cancers 2017
Breast 17,730 13.2
Breast (among females) 17,586 28.4
Colorectal (bowel) 16,682 12.4
Prostate (among males) 16,665 23.1
Melanoma 13,941 10.4
Lung 12,434 9.3

Deaths from prostate cancer

In 2014, prostate cancer was the 3rd most common cause of cancer deaths in Australia. It was also the 2nd most common cause of cancer deaths among males in 2014. It is estimated that it will remain the 3rd most common cause of cancer deaths in Australia and the 2nd most common cause of male cancer deaths in 2017.

In 2014, there were 3,102 deaths from prostate cancer in Australia. In 2017, it is estimated that this will increase to 3,452 deaths.

In 2014, the age–standardised mortality rate was 26 deaths per 100,000 males. In 2017, it is estimated that the age–standardised mortality rate will remain at 26 deaths per 100,000 males. The age-standardised mortality rate from prostate cancer will increase with age from age group 50–54.

In 2017, it is estimated that the risk of a male dying from prostate cancer by his 85th birthday will be 1 in 30.

The number of deaths from prostate cancer increased from 963 in 1968 to 3,102 in 2014. Over the same period, the age–standardised mortality rate decreased from 36 deaths per 100,000 males in 1968 to 26 deaths per 100,000 males in 2014.

Estimated most common cancers deaths in 2017

Cancer type Number of deaths 2017 % of all cancer deaths 2017
Lung 9,021 18.9
Colorectal (bowel) 4,114 8.6
Prostate (among males) 3,452 12.7
Breast 3,114 6.5
Breast (among females) 3,087 14.9
Pancreatic 2,915 6.1

Estimated age-specific incidence and mortality rates for prostate cancer, males, 2017

This line chart presents the estimated age-specific incidence (solid line) and mortality (dashed line) rates of prostate cancer for males in 2017. The age-specific incidence and mortality rates are shown on the primary (left) y-axis, with 5-year age groups from ages 0–4 to 85+ shown on the x-axis.

Source: AIHW [7].

Age-standardised incidence rates for prostate cancer 1982–2013 and age-standardised mortality rates for prostate cancer 1968–2014, males

This line chart presents the estimated age-standardised incidence (solid line) and mortality (dashed line) rates (per 100,000) of prostate cancer for males over the period 1982–2013 for incidence and 1968–2014 for mortality. The age standardised incidence and mortality rates, expressed per 100,000 persons, are shown on the primary (left) y-axis. Years from 1968 to 2014 are presented on the x-axis.

Source: AIHW [7].

In 2009–2013, individuals diagnosed with prostate cancer had a 95% chance of surviving for 5 years compared to their counterparts in the general Australian population.

Between 1984–1988 and 2009–2013, 5–year relative survival from prostate cancer improved from 58% to 95%. 

5-year relative survival from prostate cancer, 1984–1988 to 2009–2013

This line charts presents 5-year relative survival at diagnosis for prostate cancer over the period 1984-1988 to 2009 to 2013. The percentage of survival is presented on the y axis.

Source: AIHW [13].

Survivorship population for prostate cancer

The survivorship population is measured using prevalence data. Prevalence refers to the number of people alive who have previously been diagnosed with prostate cancer.

The prevalence for 1, 5 and 31 years given below are the number of people living with prostate cancer at the end of 2012 who had been diagnosed in the preceding 1, 5 and 31 years respectively.

At the end of 2012, there were 20,122 males living who had been diagnosed with prostate cancer that year, 94,114 males who had been diagnosed with prostate cancer in the previous 5 years (from 2008 to 2012) and 191,896 males who had been diagnosed with prostate cancer in the previous 31 years (from 1982 to 2012).

References

7. Australia Institute of Health and Welfare 2017. Australian Cancer Incidence and Mortality (ACIM) books: Prostate cancer. Canberra: AIHW. [Accessed February 2017].

13. AIHW 2017. Cancer in Australia 2017. Cancer series no. 101. Cat. No. CAN 100. Canberra: AIHW.