Cancers are sometimes categorised according to the type of cells that form them, such as carcinoma, sarcoma, melanoma, leukaemia, or lymphoma.
More commonly, cancers are named according to the organs or tissues in which they begin, such as liver cancer that forms in the liver, or breast cancer that starts in breast tissues.
Learn about common and different cancer types affecting men and women in Singapore, and cancer treatments available at Mount Elizabeth Hospitals.
Here are the most common cancers affecting men and women in Singapore:
Breast cancer is the most common cancer among women in Singapore. More than 2,200 women are diagnosed with breast cancer each year. With early detection, breast cancer can be effectively treated.
Cervical cancer is the 10th most common cancer among women in Singapore. More than 200 cases are diagnosed every year. Early cervical cancer may not show symptoms but can be detected with regular screening.
Colorectal cancer is the top cancer affecting men and the second most common cancer affecting women in Singapore. If you are above 50 years old, it is advisable to consider regular screening for colorectal cancer.
Lung cancer is the top cause of cancer death for men and the second most common cause of cancer death for women in Singapore. The main cause of lung cancer is tobacco smoke.
* Source: Singapore Cancer Registry Annual Report 2019
More than 100 types of cancer have been documented today, and each are classified by researchers according to the organ or cell in which it starts.
This is the rapid growth of abnormal white blood cells in the bone marrow, which crowd out healthy cells. It is either acute (comes on suddenly) or chronic (lasts a long time). Extreme fatigue is usually the first symptom that causes patients to seek medical attention.
Chronic leukemia develops slowly and may take months or even years before symptoms appear.
This refers to cancers that start in the lymph system. There are 2 principal kinds of lymphoma – Hodgkin's and non-Hodgkin's lymphoma.
Hodgkin’s lymphoma is more common in ages 15 – 30 and above 50 years, while non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma is more common in older age groups.
In Singapore, 2,753 cases of liver cancer were reported between 2014 and 2018. Liver cancer is the 4th most common cancer in both men, and the third most likely to kill. It is also the 5th most common cause of cancer death in women.
This is the 6th most common cancer affecting women in Singapore. Ovarian cancer is more common in women who started menstruating at an early age, got pregnant at a young age or menopause at a late stage, suffer from endometriosis or have been on hormone replacement therapy for more than 5 years.
This is the 7th most common cancer in men and the 9th most common cancer in women in Singapore. On average, it is responsible for 300 deaths every year. In many cases, stomach cancer is asymptomatic in its early stages, causing many patients to present at a late or advanced stage.