Baden-Württemberg: Fewer diagnosed cancers in 2020 due to Corona

Fewer cancers diagnosed does not mean that the disease is on the decline.

Baden-Württemberg: Fewer diagnosed cancers in 2020 due to Corona

Fewer cancers diagnosed does not mean that the disease is on the decline. Rather, according to scientists, there will be more advanced tumors due to the corona.

Heidelberg (dpa/lsw) - According to the Baden-Württemberg Cancer Registry, the number of new cancer cases in 2020 was seven percent below the average of the two previous years. "We already warned when the lockdown began in spring 2020 that due to the suspended diagnostic and early detection examinations, a wave of late-diagnosed cancers would build up," said the head of the German Cancer Research Center, Michael Baumann, in Heidelberg. The numbers now seemed to confirm this fear. The conclusion is that cancer registries have to function much faster so that such developments can be countered in good time in the future. The registry collects data on the occurrence and progression of cancer for research purposes.

According to the register, the incidence of cancer was 524 per 100,000 inhabitants in 2020 - a drop of seven percent. This decline was particularly strong in April 2020: Here, 151 fewer cancer cases were diagnosed per 100,000 inhabitants per year than in previous years. This pattern was found in both women and men, and also in three of the four most common types of cancer - breast, colon and prostate cancer. Only the numbers for lung cancer did not go down. The general decline was not reversed by the end of 2020. The authors of the cancer registry predicted that more people would die from cancer in the next few years.

Baumann cited the overloading of clinics and other medical facilities as one of the reasons for the development. On the other hand, many people would have avoided early detection examinations out of concern about corona infection.

In relation to the number of inhabitants, the fewest people in Germany die of cancer in Baden-Württemberg. According to the Techniker Krankenkasse (TK), there were around 223 deaths per 100,000 inhabitants in the southwest in 2020 due to cancer. In a nationwide comparison, this is the lowest value ahead of Bavaria at 233. According to TK, the national average is 252 deaths.

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