The major cancers in men are lung and prostate
In men, lung cancer was the commonest form of cancer, followed by prostate cancer (238,000 new cases, representing 15.5% of cancers diagnosed in men). It is worth noting that prostate cancer was the commonest form of cancer diagnosed in men in 2004 in the European Union.
Said Professor Boyle: "Lung, colorectal and breast cancer account for two-fifths of the entire European cancer total and lung, colorectal, stomach and breast cancers together are responsible for half of all the cancer deaths.
"Our estimates give a good indication of the burden of cancer incidence and death throughout Europe and will help to clarify the priorities for cancer control action."
Improvements in breast cancer screening, but slow progress for colorectal cancer prevention
"While prospects are encouraging as regards screening for breast cancer in terms of mortality reduction, progress is too slow concerning colorectal cancer prevention", said Peter Boyle. "Progress is only possible through a joint European effort", he added.
Cigarette toll heaviest on men, but increasingly also in women
The overwhelming majority of lung cancer is caused by tobacco smoking and tobacco control was clearly a number one priority, aimed not only at men, but also increasingly at women. "There has been substantial progress among men in Europe, but the situation among women and especially young women is cause for concern. There is also a great difference between Northern Europe and Central and Eastern Europe. Central and Eastern Europe should be a special target for tobacco control."
Mortality trend on the decrease overall