Cancer symptoms could include a lump in your breast, if you’re a woman, chest pain and changes in bowel habits, among others.
The condition is caused when a cell starts dividing uncontrollably, possibly growing into a tumour that can block pathways in the body.
On Monday researchers at the University of Washington published their findings on cancer incidence between 1990 to 2016, as part of the Global Burden of disease study.
They found that in 2016 alone, they found that there was a 28 per cent global increase in cancer incidence to 17.2 million.
Using data available worldwide, they were able to reveal which countries had the highest incidence of new cancer cases.
Australia had the highest number of new cancer cases a year, with 743.8 per 100,000 people, followed by New Zealand (542.8), and the United States (532.9). The UK ranked eighth globally for the number of new cancer cases every year.
The study also suggested that the lowest rate of cancer was in Syria (85 per 100,000), followed by Bhutan (86) on the border of India and African country Algeria (86.7).
The highest rates of cancer death each year was suggested to be in Mongolia (272.1 per 10,000), followed by Zimbabwe (245.8), and Dominica (203.1). The fourth highest rate of death was in EU-country Hungary (202.7), followed by Grenada (201) and Uruguay (190.6).
Results showed that you were least likely to die of cancer if you lived in Syria (67.4 per 100,000), Algeria (67.5) or Oman (69.2), a country in Arabia. The UK and no other European countries featured on this list.
Published in JAMA Oncology, the study suggests that lifestyle-related cancers, such as cervical and stomach cancers, saw a “universal increase” from 2006 to 2016.
The researchers also found that rates of cancer remained higher in more developed countries.
Overall, lung cancer was the leading global cause of cancer death in men, while breast cancer was found to be the main cause in women.
Prostate cancer in men was also shown to be the most common cancer across more and less developed countries, with sub-saharan Africa being at a slightly higher risk.
“While the increase in lung, colorectal and skin cancers over the past decade is concerning, the prevention potential is substantial,” said Dr Christina Fitzmaurice, Assistant Professor of Global Health at the University of Washington, who helped coordinate the study.
She added that, “vital prevention efforts such as tobacco control, dietary intervention, and broader health promotion campaigns need to be scaled up in response to this rise in lifestyle-related cancers”.
“Ensuring universal access to health care is a vital prerequisite for early detection and cancer treatment.”