Prostate cancer in Australia
The following material has been sourced from the Australian Institute of Health and Welfare
Prostate cancer incorporates ICD-10 cancer code C61 (Malignant neoplasm of prostate).
Estimated* number of new cases of prostate cancer diagnosed in 2016
Estimated % of all new male cancer cases diagnosed in 2016
Estimated number of deaths from prostate cancer in 2016
Estimated % of all male deaths from cancer in 2016
Chance of surviving at least 5 years (2008–2012)
Males living with prostate cancer at the end of 2010 (diagnosed in the 5 year period 2006 to 2010)
How common is prostate cancer in Australia?
In 2012, the age-standardised incidence rate was 163 cases per 100,000 males.d In 2016, it is estimated that the age-standardised incidence rate will be 129 cases per 100,000 males.
Prostate cancer was the most commonly diagnosed cancer in Australia in 2012. It is estimated that it will remain the most commonly diagnosed cancer in 2016.
In 2016, it is estimated that the risk of a male being diagnosed with prostate cancer by their 85th birthday will be 1 in 6.
In 2016, it is expected the incidence rate of prostate cancer among males will increase with age until age group 65–69. It will then decrease until age group 80–84 before increasing for males aged 85+ (see figure below).
Figure 1: Estimated age-specific incidence rates for prostate cancer, 2016
Source: AIHW analysis of the Australian Cancer Database, (see source table 1).
|Cancer type||New cases 2016||% of all new cancers 2016|
|Prostate (among males)||18,138||25.2|
|Breast (among females)||15,934||27.3|
Deaths from prostate cancer
In 2013, there were 3,112 deaths from prostate cancer in Australia. In 2016, it is estimated that this will increase to 3,398 deaths.c
In 2013, the age-standardised mortality rate was 27 deaths per 100,000 males.d In 2016, it is estimated that the age-standardised mortality rate will be 26 deaths per 100,000 males.
In 2013, prostate cancer accounted for the 2nd highest number of deaths from cancer among males in Australia. It is estimated that it will remain the 2nd most common cause of death from cancer among males in 2016.
In 2016, it is estimated that the risk of a male dying from prostate cancer by their 85th birthday will be 1 in 30.
Trends in prostate cancer
The number of new cases of prostate cancer diagnosed increased from 3,606 in 1982 to 20,065 in 2012.
Over the same period, the age-standardised incidence rate increased from 80 cases per 100,000 males in 1982 to 163 cases per 100,000 males in 2012.
The number of deaths from prostate cancer increased from 963 in 1968 to 3,112 in 2013.
Over the same period, the age-standardised mortality rate decreased from 36 deaths per 100,000 males in 1968 to 27 deaths per 100,000 males in 2013.
Figure 2: Age-standardised incidence rates for prostate cancer 1982–2012 and age-standardised mortality rates for prostate cancer 1968–2013
Note: Incidence rates available for 1982–2012, and mortality rates available for 1968–2013.
Source: Australian Institute of Health and Welfare1
Survival from prostate cancer
In 2008–2012 in Australia, males diagnosed with prostate cancer had a 94% chance of surviving for 5 years compared to their counterparts in the general Australian population.
Between 1983–1987 and 2008–2012, 5-year relative survival from prostate cancer improved from 58% to 94%.
Figure 3: 5-year relative survival from prostate cancer, 1983–1987 to 2008–2012
Source: AIHW analysis of the Australian Cancer Database, (see source table 2).
Prevalence of prostate cancer
The prevalence for 1, 5 and 29 years given below are the number of people living with prostate cancer at the end of 2010 who had been diagnosed in the preceding 1, 5 and 29 years respectively.
One year prevalence
At the end of 2010, there were 19,462 males living who had been diagnosed with prostate cancer that year.
Five year prevalence
At the end of 2010, there were 89,841 males living who had been diagnosed with prostate cancer in the previous 5 years (from 2006 to 2010).
29 year prevalence
At the end of 2010, there were 168,903 males living who had been diagnosed with prostate cancer in the previous 29 years (from 1982 to 2010).
|Age group (years)||Number of new cases
per 100,000 males
|Year||5-year relative survival (%)|
International Statistical Classification of Diseases and Related Health Problems Version 10 (ICD-10)
Cancer, like other health conditions, is classified by the International Statistical Classification of Diseases and Related Health Problems Version 10 (ICD-10). This is a statistical classification, published by the World Health Organization, in which each morbid condition is assigned a unique code according to established criteria.
Future estimates for incidence and mortality are a mathematical extrapolation of past trends. They assume that the most recent trends will continue into the future, and are intended to illustrate future changes that might reasonably be expected to occur if the stated assumptions continue to apply over the estimated period. Actual future cancer incidence and mortality rates may vary from these estimations for a variety of factors. New screening programs may increase the detection of new cancer cases; new vaccination programs may decrease the risk of developing cancer; and improvements in treatment options may decrease mortality rates.
Due to the rounding of these estimates, male and female incidence and mortality may not sum to person incidence and mortality.
Cancer incidence indicates the number of new cancers diagnosed during a specified time period (usually one year).
- The 2012 national incidence counts include estimates for NSW and the ACT because the actual data were not available.
- The 2016 estimates are based on 2002–11 incidence data. Due to rounding of these estimates, male and female incidence may not sum to person incidence.
Cancer mortality refers to the number of deaths occurring during a specified time period (usually one year) for which the underlying cause of death is cancer.
- The 2016 estimates are based on 2002–13 mortality data.
Prevalence of cancer refers to the number of people alive with a prior diagnosis of cancer at a given time. It is distinct from incidence (see above). The longest period for which it is possible to calculate prevalence using the available national data (from 1982 to 2010) is currently 29 years. This span is used to estimate the 'total' prevalence of cancer at the end of 2010, noting that people diagnosed with cancer before 1982 are not included.
Age standardised rates
- Incidence and mortality rates expressed per 100,000 population are age-standardised to the Australian population as at 30 June 2001.