We’ve all know for quite some time that China had a huge pollution problem. But we didn’t know exactly how big it was. Combining that with their huge population and habit for smoking, the results of a new study show that over 7500 Chinese die every day from cancer.
What triggered the study
China, home to one fifth of the world’s population, is also the country with the second highest levels of air pollution in the world.
Because of this and because, you know, there are a lot of people living in those polluted areas, 2015 saw 2.8 million Chinese people die from cancer.
For a mean average, that would be 7,500 cancer deaths each day.
This caused a team of researchers from the National Cancer Center Beijing, the American Cancer Society, and the University of Sydney to start a meta-analysis in order to point out the exact numbers, in the hopes of raising awareness.
Living in the time of cancer
The huge, incredibly damaging levels of pollution in the country, as well as the tendency of the average Chinese to start smoking at an early age is what is mostly responsible for the barrage of cancer deaths hitting the country.
Smoking was associated with 25% of all cancer deaths, despite other factors being harder to avoid.
Outdoor pollution is present pretty much everywhere, with Chinese people wearing masks in order to filter out some of the toxins, while indoor pollution, despite not being as big a problem, is also an issue.
Indoor air pollution is generally caused in China by coal burning, soil and water pollution, as well as by burning toxic materials for warmth.
The sad, sad numbers
For the study, the team of researchers looked at mortality data from 72 different Chinese cancer registries, as well as at that from the National Central Cancer Registry of China and from hospitals, health centers, and the Civil Administration Bureau.
The numbers are abysmal.
China is responsible for as much as 27% of all cancer deaths worldwide, as well as for 22% of all cancer diagnoses.
The four most common types of cancer present in the country are lung, stomach, liver and esophageal, making up 57% of countrywide cases, as compared to 18% worldwide.
Every day in 2015, 12,000 new cancer diagnoses were performed in the country, adding up to a total whopping sum of 4.2 million new cases each year.
Image source: Flickr