Cancer statistics, 2003

CA Cancer J Clin. 2003 Jan-Feb;53(1):5-26. doi: 10.3322/canjclin.53.1.5.


Each year, the American Cancer Society estimates the number of new cancer cases and deaths expected in the United States in the current year, and compiles the most recent data on cancer incidence, mortality, and survival by using incidence data from the National Cancer Institute (NCI) and mortality data from the National Center for Health Statistics (NCHS). Incidence and death rates are age adjusted to the 2000 US standard population. In the year 2003, we estimate that 1,334,100 new cases of cancer will be diagnosed, and 556,500 people will die from cancer in the United States. Age-adjusted cancer death rates declined in both males and females in the 1990s, though the magnitude of decline is substantially higher in males than in females. In contrast, incidence rates continued to increase in females while stabilizing in males. African-American males showed the largest decline for mortality. However, African Americans still carry the highest burden of cancer with diagnosis of cancer at a later stage and poorer survival within each stage compared with Whites. In spite of the continued decline in cancer death rates in the most recent time period, the total number of recorded cancer deaths in the United States continues to increase slightly due to the aging and expanding population.

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Aged
  • American Cancer Society
  • Cause of Death / trends
  • Child
  • Child, Preschool
  • Epidemiologic Factors
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Incidence
  • Infant
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Neoplasm Staging
  • Neoplasms / epidemiology*
  • Neoplasms / mortality
  • Neoplasms / pathology
  • Socioeconomic Factors
  • United States / epidemiology