Asian-Americans and Cancer

Asian Americans generally have lower cancer rates than the non-Hispanic white population. However, disparities still exist in certain types of cancer.

  • Asian/Pacific Islander men are 40% less likely to have prostate cancer as white men, but they are twice as likely to have stomach cancer.
  • Although Asian/Pacific Islander women are 20% less likely to have breast cancer as white women, they are almost three times as likely to have stomach cancer.
  • Both Asian/Pacific Islander men and women have almost three times the incidence of liver & IBD cancer as the non-Hispanic white population.
  • Asian/Pacific Islander men are twice as likely to die from stomach cancer as compared to the non-Hispanic white population, and Asian/Pacific Islander women are 2.7 times as likely to die from the same disease.

New Cases:

New Cancer Cases per 100,000 – Men (2008)

Cancer Asian/Pacific
Islander
Men
Non-Hispanic
White Men
Asian/Pacific
Islander/Non-
Hispanic
White Ratio
All Sites 352.9 540.4 0.7
Prostate 84.2 147.6 0.6
Stomach 15.5 8.1 1.9

 

New Cancer Cases per 100,000 – Women (2008)

Cancer Asian/Pacific
Islander
Women
Non-Hispanic
White Women
Asian/Pacific
Islander/Non-
Hispanic
White Ratio
All Sites 314.3 437.2 0.7
Breast 104.1 134.8 0.8
Cervical 6.4 6.2 1.0
Stomach 9.9 3.6 2.8

Source:  CDC, 2012. Health United States, 2011. Table 47.
http://www.cdc.gov/nchs/data/hus/hus11.pdf [PDF | 9.8MB]

 

Top Cancer  Sites for Asian/Pacific Islander (2005-2009):

Cancer Incidence Rates per 100,000 – Men

Cancer Asian/Pacific
Islander
Men
Non-HispanicWhite Men Asian/Pacific Islander/Non-Hispanic White Ratio
All Sites 342.6 564.7 0.6
Liver & IBD* 22.1 8.8 2.5
Stomach 16.4 8.5 1.9
Prostate 85.4 150.6 0.6

 

Cancer Incidence Rates per 100,000 – Women

Cancer Asian/Pacific
Islander
Women
Non-Hispanic White Women Asian/Pacific Islander/Non-Hispanic White Ratio
All Sites 299.4 439.0 0.7
Liver & IBD* 8.5 2.9 2.9
Stomach 9.9 3.7 2.7
Breast 94.5 132.8 0.7
Cervical 7.2 7.1 1.0

*IBD = Intrahepatic Bile Duct
Source:  NCI 2012.  Seer Cancer Statistics Review, 1975-2009.  Tables 2.15 through 24.15
http://seer.cancer.gov/csr/1975_2009_pops09/sections.html

 

Death Rate:

Cancer Death Rates per 100,000 – Men (2005-2009)

Cancer Asian/Pacific Islander Men Non-Hispanic White Men Asian/Pacific Islander/Non-Hispanic White Ratio
All Sites 132.6 221.9 0.6
Liver & IBD* 14.5 6.6 2.2
Stomach 9.0 4.0 2.3
Prostate 10.0 21.9 0.5

 

Cancer Death Rates per 100,000 – Women (2005-2009)

Cancer Asian/Pacific Islander Women Non-Hispanic White Women Asian/Pacific Islander/Non-Hispanic White Ratio
All Sites 93.2 154.7 0.6
Cervical 2.0 2.1 1.0
Liver & IBD* 6.1 2.8 2.2
Stomach 5.3 2.0 2.7
Breast 11.9 23.0 0.5

*IBD = Intrahepatic Bile Duct
Source:  NCI 2012.  Seer Cancer Statistics Review, 1975-2009.  Table 1.20.
http://seer.cancer.gov/csr/1975_2009_pops09/results_single/sect_01_table.20_2pgs.pdf [PDF | 24KB]

 

Screening:

Breast Cancer

Percent of women age 40 and over who had a mammogram within the past 2 years, 2010 (crude)

Asian American Women Non-Hispanic White Women Asian American/Non-Hispanic White Ratio
62.4 67.8 0.9

Source:  CDC, 2012. Health United States, 2011. Table 90.
http://www.cdc.gov/nchs/data/hus/hus11.pdf [PDF | 9.8MB]

 

Cervical Cancer

Percent of women age 18 and over who had a Pap smear within the past 3 years, 2010 (crude)

Asian American Women Non-Hispanic White Women Asian American/Non-Hispanic White Ratio
68.0 72.8 0.9

Source:  CDC, 2012. Health United States, 2011. Table 91.
http://www.cdc.gov/nchs/data/hus/hus11.pdf [PDF | 9.8MB]

 

Colon Cancer

Adults age 50 and over who reported they ever had a colonoscopy, sigmoidoscopy, or proctoscopy, United States, 2008

Asian American Non-Hispanic White Asian American/Non-Hispanic White Ratio
48.1 58.4 0.8

Source:  2011 National Healthcare Disparities Report. Table 1_3_2.2a & 1_3_2.2b.
http://www.ahrq.gov/qual/qrdr11/index.html

 

U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Office of Minority Health