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OBJECTIVE: To estimate the incidence, mortality and prevalence of most common gastrointestinal tract cancers (esophageal, gastric and colorectal cancers) in China in 2008 and to predict the related incidence and mortality in the next 20 years. METHODS: Data from 36 Chinese cancer registries and the Third National Death Survey in China (2004 - 2005) were used to estimate the incidence, mortality and 5-year prevalence of esophageal, gastric and colorectal cancers in China in 2008. Mathematical models were used to predict the incidence and mortality of these cancers in the next 20 years. RESULTS: In 2008, the incident cases of esophageal, gastric and colorectal cancers were estimated to be 259 235, 464 439 and 221 313, respectively, which totally accounted for one third of all the incident cancer cases. Age-standardized incidence rates of esophageal, gastric and colorectal cancers were estimated as 16.7/100 000, 29.9/100 000 and 14.2/100 000, respectively, while the mortality rates were 13.4/100 000, 22.3/100 000 and 6.9/100 000, respectively. The number of 5-year prevalent cases were estimated as 257 352 for esophageal cancer, 680 824 for gastric cancer and 509 140 for colorectal cancer, which correspondingly ranked the seventh, first and third among all the number of cancers, respectively. Till 2030, incident cases of these cancers would reach 484 923, 860 022 and 400 086, while deaths reach 412 916, 678 670 and 211 714, respectively. CONCLUSION: Esophageal, gastric and colorectal cancers had been the main digestive tract cancers in China, that causing serious health burden. As dramatic increasing burden was predicted in the next two decades for these three cancers, more attention needs to be paid accordingly.


Journal article


Zhonghua Liu Xing Bing Xue Za Zhi

Publication Date





1052 - 1055


Adolescent, Adult, Aged, Child, Child, Preschool, China, Colorectal Neoplasms, Esophageal Neoplasms, Female, Gastrointestinal Neoplasms, Humans, Incidence, Infant, Male, Middle Aged, Prevalence, Stomach Neoplasms, Young Adult