Skin cancers

Melanoma less common as cause of death in Australia


Australia may be the skin cancer capital of the world but melanoma is becoming less prominent as a cause of death in the population, new figures show.

Melanoma has dropped from 16th to 20th place over the last decade in the national league table for leading causes of death, according to the latest figures released by the Australian Bureau of Statistics.

In 2009 there were 1837 deaths attributed to melanoma and other malignant neoplasms of the skin, rising to 2094 deaths in 2018.

But the mortality ranking for melanoma fell as it was overtaken by conditions such as liver cancer and cardiac arrhythmias as a cause of death.

The latest ABS data also showed that melanoma was one of the conditions with a high gender disparity, with a 67.6%  male to female ratio. For males, melanoma and skin cancers were ranked as 15th leading causes of death but did not feature in the top 20 causes of death among females.

The top 5 causes of death remained unchanged as ischaemic heart disease, dementia including Alzheimer’s disease, strokes, lung cancer and chronic lower respiratory disease.

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