Rates of chemotherapy, radiotherapy, and surgery for cancer in England

  • Public Health England

  • curated by Dawn O'Shea
  • Medical news
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For cancers diagnosed between 2013 and 2016 in England, 39% were treated with at least one of the three most common therapies - chemotherapy, radiotherapy, or surgery, according to new figures published by Public Health England (PHE).

Of those receiving at least one of the main treatment types, 28% were treated with chemotherapy, 27% received radiotherapy, and 45% underwent surgery. One in five (22%) were treated with two of these, and 7% were treated with a combination of all three.

However, a third of diagnoses had no record of receiving any of these treatments.

For cancers diagnosed at a later stage, chemotherapy was used more commonly than for early-stage diagnoses and less surgery was used for later-stage diagnoses.

Cancers diagnosed in younger patients were more likely to be treated than those diagnosed in older patients. Three in four (76%) patients aged under 50 were treated with surgery compared with 23% of cancers in patients aged 80 or over.

PHE points out that the proportions presented in the report are not adjusted for any factors that may affect treatment, including stage at diagnosis, age at diagnosis, sex, income deprivation, broad ethnic group, and the presence of other illnesses.