Cancer now the leading cause of death in higher income countries
New global research has revealed that cancer is now the leading cause of death in higher income countries. Previously heart disease was the leading cause of death in higher income countries as it remains in middle income and low income countries.
The new research published in The Lancet found that cancer now causes 55% of deaths among middle aged people in higher income countries and heart disease causes 23% of deaths.
The research was conducted in 21 countries across 5 continents over 9.5 years and included 162,534 adults aged between 35 to 70. The researchers divided the countries into 3 groups, high income countries, middle income countries and low income countries. High income countries included Canada, United Arab Emirates, Sweden and Saudi Arabia. Middle income countries included Poland, Turkey, South Africa, Argentina, Brazil, Chile, Iran, Malaysia, Palestine and Columbia. Low income countries included Bangladesh, India, Pakistan, Tanzania and Zimbabwe.
The researchers found that in middle income countries, cancer was responsible for 30% of deaths and heart disease for 41% of deaths. In low income countries cancer was responsible for 15% of deaths and heart disease for 43% of deaths.