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Skin Cancer

Volume 496: debated on Thursday 16 July 2009

To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office how many cases of basal cell carcinoma were diagnosed in patients aged (a) under 30, (b) 31 to 60 and (c) over 60 years of age in each of the last 10 years. (286305)

The information requested falls within the responsibility of the UK statistics Authority. I have asked the authority to reply.

Letter from Karen Dunnell, dated July 2009:

As National Statistician, I have been asked to reply to your recent Parliamentary Question asking how many cases of basal cell carcinoma were diagnosed in patients aged (a) under 30, (b) 30 to 59 and (c) over 60 years of age in each of the last 10 years [286305]

The latest available figures for newly diagnosed cases of cancer (incidence) are for the year 2006. Registrations of newly diagnosed cases of non-melanoma skin cancer which had a cell type (morphology) identified as basal cell carcinoma, in patients aged (a) under 30, (b) 30 to 59 and (c) over 60 years from 1997 to 2006, are given in Table 1.

ONS has been advised by expert epidemiologists and members of the former Steering Committee on Cancer Registration that non-melanoma skin cancer is greatly under-registered. Consequently, the figures given are likely to be under-estimates.

Table 1: Registrations of newly diagnosed cases of non-melanoma skin cancer identified as basal cell carcinoma1 by age group: England, 1997 to 2006

Registrations

Age group

1997

1998

1999

2000

2001

2002

2003

2004

2005

2006

<30

183

185

205

187

209

213

234

209

221

210

30-59

7,236

8,265

8,282

8,674

9,445

9,537

10,052

10,396

10,575

10,747

60+

23,255

26,725

26,914

28,311

30,009

30,425

31,765

34,185

35,680

36,440

Total

30,674

35,175

35,401

37,172

39,663

40,175

42,051

44,790

46,476

47,397

1Cases were identified as new registrations coded to C44 (non-melanoma skin cancer) in the International Classification of Diseases, Tenth Revision (ICD-10) accompanied by a morphology code of M8090/3 - M8093/3 (basal cell carcinoma) in the International Classification of Diseases for Oncology, Second Revision (ICD-02).