Number of New Cancer Cases Still on the Rise Statistics indicate that Nova Scotians need to start living healthier and get screened

29 May 2013

Halifax -

The Canadian Cancer Society Nova Scotia Division (CCS-NSD) is urging Nova Scotians to lead healthier lives and get screened on a regular basis, in light of new national statistics released today.

Canadian Cancer Statistics 2013, an overview of cancer rates in Canada released by the National Canadian Cancer Society, indicates that four types of cancer – lung, breast, colorectal and prostate – continue to be the leading cancers diagnosed in the country accounting for 52% of newly diagnosed cancers, and that liver cancer is rapidly increasing.

Since 1970, the incidence rate of liver cancer has tripled in Canadian men and doubled in Canadian women. Although this increase does not put the disease in the projected top ten of newly diagnosed cases, the trend is troubling for all Canadians because of its consistent growth. Most alarming perhaps for Nova Scotians is that we still have a higher incidence rate of most types of cancers than our neighbours in other provinces. 

In fact, incidences of cancer in Nova Scotia are 4% (women) and 8% (men) higher than the national average. There are a number of factors that are contributing to this unfortunate statistic including our aging population, lack of people using screening programs and unhealthy lifestyles. 

“This continuing trend clearly shows us that Nova Scotians should be getting screened so that cancer can be detected and diagnosed when it is most treatable. We are fortunate because Nova Scotia is a leader in providing the general public with screening tests for cancers such as colorectal, breast and cervical. We just need more people to take advantage of these services,” said Kelly Wilson, Manager, Government and Community Relations, CCS-NSD. 

In addition to screening, adopting healthier lifestyles will ensure Nova Scotia’s cancer incidence rates decrease. 

“There are so many things Nova Scotians can do to reduce the risks of being diagnosed with cancer such as taking control of our health by limiting alcohol consumption, exercising more, not smoking and eating a well-balanced diet. These are all critical since we know the absence of these healthy lifestyle choices is associated with a higher risk of cancer. If we don’t do more to address the risk factors for cancer now, incidence and death rates will only rise,” added Wilson. 

Canadian Cancer Statistics 2013 was prepared through a collaboration of the Canadian Cancer Society, the Public Health Agency of Canada, Statistics Canada and provincial and territorial cancer registries. For more information about Canadian Cancer Statistics 2013, visit cancer.ca.

For 75 years the Canadian Cancer Society has been with Canadians in the fight for life. We have been relentless in our commitment to prevent cancer, fund research and support Canadians touched by cancer. From this foundation, we will work with Canadians to change cancer forever so fewer Canadians are diagnosed with the disease and more survive. When you want to know more about cancer, visit our website at cancer.ca or call our toll-free bilingual Cancer Information Service at 1 888 939-3333; TTY, 1 866 786-3934.

For more information, please contact:

Heather Rice

Marketing and Communications Coordinator

Canadian Cancer Society

Phone: (902) 423-6183