Strike Out Bowel Cancer

Bowel Cancer Facts

Learn more about Bowel Cancer

  1. Bowel cancer is the second most common cause of cancer-related death in Australia, after lung cancer.
  2. Bowel cancer is the deadliest cancer and the fifth leading cause of death overall for Australians aged 25-44.
  3. 15,206 Australians are diagnosed with bowel cancer each year, 1,542 (10%) of whom are under the age of 50.
  4. 5,255 Australians die from bowel cancer each year-101 people a week. 292 (5%) are under the age of 50.
  5. Detected early, 99% of bowel cancers can be successfully treated or even prevented
  6. There has been a 186% increase in bowel cancer cases in adolescents and young adults (15-24 years) over the past three decades.
  7. For around 30% of bowel cancer cases, there is a family history of hereditary contribution.
  8. The five-year relative survival for young Australians aged 15-24 diagnosed with bowel cancer is 87.3%, which means young people have around an eight in ten chance of surviving five years after diagnosis relative to comparable people in the general population.
  9. Of those diagnosed with young-onset bowel cancer, over 86% experience symptoms.
  10. Young-onset bowel cancers are often diagnosed at later stages, suggesting the increased incidence is real and not representative of a shift in age at diagnosis attributable to earlier detection.
  11. Fewer than 40% of bowel cancers are detected at an early stage when the likelihood of remaining cancer-free is high. Bowel cancers diagnosed at a late stage (stage 4) can be treated, but the likelihood of remaining cancer-free for the five years following successful treatment is significantly lower at 13%.

Statistics from Bowel Cancer Australia (February 2022)

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