Stats & factoids
- An estimated 22,700 women will be diagnosed with breast cancer and 5,100 will die of it.
- Breast cancer represents 26% of all newly diagnosed cancer cases in women, ranks second in mortality for women at 14%.
- On average, 62 Canadian women will be diagnosed with breast cancer every day.
- On average, 14 Canadian women will die of breast cancer every day.
- Breast cancer is the most common cancer in females over the age of 20. Deaths from breast cancer are more frequent than deaths from other common cancers only in women 30–39 years of age.
- An estimated 200 men will be diagnosed with breast cancer and 55 will die of it.
- Ontario has the highest number of new cases this year at 9,100 & Prince Edward Island with 95
- There is little variation seen in breast cancer incidence and mortality rates across Canada
- Between 2001 and 2007 for males and between 1998 and 2007 for females, overall mortality rates declined significantly. The rates declined, on average, by at least 2% per year for breast cancer.
- Female breast cancer incidence rates appear to be fairly consistent across the country, with no discernible geographic pattern.
- Breast cancer occurs primarily in females 50–69 years of age.
- 30% of breast cancer cases will be diagnosed among women over the age of 69,
- 19% will occur in those under age 50.
- It is notable that although over half of the new cases of breast cancer occur between ages 50 and 69, more deaths from breast cancer will occur in females 80 years and older than in any other age group, reflecting the benefits of screening and treatment in prolonging life in middle-aged women.
- Of the 22,700 new cases this year 110 aged (20-29), 850 (30-39), 3,300 (40-49), 5,600 (50-59), 6000 (60-69).
- Of the 5,100 deaths that will occur this year 5 aged (20-29), 90 (30-39), 410 (40-49), 920 (50-59), 1,100 (60-69).
- The morality rate has fallen almost 40% since it peaked in 1986. The downward trend has accelerated to 2.2% per year in recent years. This is likely the result of a combination of increased mammography screening and the use of more effective adjuvant therapies following breast cancer surgery. The breast cancer mortality rate is the lowest it has been since 1950. Similar declines have also occurred in the United States, United Kingdom and Australia. (Bray F, McCarron P, Parkin DM. The changing global patterns of female breast cancer incidence and mortality. Breast Cancer Res 2004;6(6):229–239).
Reference – Canadian Cancer Statistics 2012 www.cancer.ca
What is breast cancer?
Breast cancer is a type of cancer where cells in the breast tissue divide and grow in an abnormal and uncontrolled way and cause a tumour to form.
There are millions of cells in your body and each cell contains thousands and thousands of genes. Genes contain information, which control cell behaviour. If the genes in even a single cell malfunction, cancer can occur. Gene malfunction can be caused by exposure to cancer-causing agents in the environment or may be the result of rare errors in the normal mechanisms that replicate and repair cells. It may also be inherited.
How is breast cancer treated?
Breast cancer is not one single disease and cannot be treated as such. It is found in many forms and various stages. Thanks to progress in research in the past decade, we now have the sophistication to tailor treatments. Anyone with breast cancer should consult with a medical oncologist to determine her or his specific treatment needs. The main types of breast cancer treatment include surgery (lumpectomy or mastectomy), radiation, chemotherapy and hormone therapy.
How common is breast cancer? How many women are diagnosed each year?
Breast cancer is the most common cancer among Canadian women. One in nine (11%) Canadian women is expected to develop breast cancer during her lifetime (this means by age 90). Approximately 23,200 women are expected to be diagnosed in Canada in 2010. On average, that’s 446 Canadian women every week.
How many of Canadian women diagnosed with breast cancer are young women?
Breast cancer is the most common cancer in women aged 20-59, accounting for 37% of new cancer cases. In Canada, 4,408 women under age 50 are diagnosed with breast cancer each year. About 1,100 are under the age of 40. Though the numbers seem small, younger women with breast cancer have many unique needs and require age-appropriate support.
What unique challenges do younger women with breast cancer face?
Young women with breast cancer experience isolation as well as challenges with dating, sexuality, fertility, child care, finances, employment and more. Treatment and care issues include delays in diagnosis, generally more advanced cancers at diagnosis and higher mortality rates, low participation in clinical trials, lack of age-appropriate care, concerns around social support during cancer treatment, as well as late effects of treatment, second cancers and long-term psychosocial issues for cancer survivors.
How does Rethink define “young” women?
Generally, Rethink focuses on raising awareness, providing education and supporting women with breast cancer in their 20s, 30s and early 40s.
Are there things I can do to reduce my risk of breast cancer?
Though the causes of breast cancer are not known, studies show there are things you can do to try to reduce your risk. Read Rethink’s Tips for reducing your risk and learn about early detection through the T.L.C.: Touch. Look. Check. campaign.
$20 Your generous one-time donation goes a long way toward helping young women affected by breast cancer and their families.
$50 Your generous one-time donation goes a long way toward helping young women affected by breast cancer and their families.
$150 Your generous one-time donation goes a long way toward helping young women affected by breast cancer and their families.
$10 a month Your small monthly donation can make a huge impact in the lives of young women with breast cancer.
$20 a month For the cost of 3 lattes a month, you can help fund childcare for a single mother during her breast cancer treatment and recovery.
$30 a month For the cost of a monthly manicure, you can help a breast cancer researcher complete an innovative, life-saving study.
- Rethink's Mission
To continuously pioneer cutting-edge breast cancer education, support and research that speak fearlessly to the unique needs of young (or youngish) women.