Gastrointestinal cancer statistics
Colon cancer accounts for just over 7% of all cancer cases and affects men and women equally. Improvements in diagnosis and treatment have led to a reduction in mortality in recent decades. It is believed that lifestyle factors, in particular diet, affect the risk of developing colon cancer.
Rectal cancer is more common among men than women. Mortality has fallen in recent decades, mainly as a result of improvements in treatment. It is believed that diet affects the risk of developing rectal cancer.
Stomach cancer has fallen dramatically in Sweden in recent decades, mainly due to changes in diet and improved food-handling procedures. It is believed that the bacterium Helicobacter pylori, which is found in the stomach, contributes to many cases of cancer throughout the world.
Pancreatic cancer has fallen to a certain extent and is now equally common among men as among women. Smoking is one risk factor, as is chronic inflammation of the pancreas.
Oesophageal cancer is more than twice as common among men as among women. Smoking, a high alcohol consumption and obesity are known risk factors.
Lever cancer is significantly more common among men than among women. The most important risk factors are alcohol abuse and chronic hepatitis.
Gall bladder cancer and cancer of the bile duct have fallen in both men and women in recent decades. No risk factors have been identified.
Cancer of the small intestine is rare.
(Source: The Swedish Cancer Society)