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Prostate cancer to become the most common cancer within a decade

Less than half of men are diagnosed at an early stage
prostate cancer diagnosis

Prostate cancer is set to become the most commonly diagnosed of all cancers in the UK by 2030, a charity has warned.

Figures from Prostate Cancer UK reveal the number of men dying from prostate cancer in the UK has exceeded 12,000 in one year for the first time ever.

Although a man diagnosed in 2020 has a much-improved chance of survival compared to a man diagnosed 10 years ago, a rise the number of affected men means UK-wide data for 2017 showed the highest ever recorded yearly deaths from the disease.  

This is despite medical advances in diagnosing and treating prostate cancer and increased national interest. 

The charity said there are two main barriers to curbing the number of deaths: late diagnosis and cancer recurrence. At the moment, only 47% of men are diagnosed at an early stage when there is a much greater chance of the disease being cured.

This is some way from the NHS England ambition for 75% of people with cancer to be diagnosed at an early stage.

In addition, many men who are treated for prostate cancer go on to see their cancer return.  

Angela Culhane, chief executive of Prostate Cancer UK, said as many men as possible must have their prostate cancer caught early and successfully treated so their lives are not cut short by the disease.

“The fact that deaths from the disease are still reaching record highs serves as a stark reminder of the work yet to do,” she warned.