This paper summarises the population-based major trends in cancer incidence and mortality in the period 1989-1998 in The Netherlands. Trends of the European age-adjusted incidence and mortality rates were estimated by the Estimated Annual Percentage Change (EAPC) method. Increases in incidence were found for cancer of the breast and lung for females. For males, an increase was observed for cancer of the prostate, colon, rectum and testis. In both groups, oesophageal and pharyngeal cancer increased, but that of stomach and gallbladder cancer decreased. The main increases in mortality were found for pharyngeal cancer in males, lung in females and oesophageal cancer in both sexes. Decreases were shown for stomach cancer for both sexes and lung cancer for males. Trends in incidence may be a result of changes in behaviour, smoking habits in preceding decades are related to the increase in lung cancer for females, and early detection, screening programmes increased the incidence for breast and prostate cancers. Decreases in mortality may be related to more successful treatment of leukaemia, Hodgkin's lymphoma, colorectal and testicular cancers. Primary prevention of cancer remains important.
- Cancer registry