Cancer rates will rise six times faster in women than men over the next 20 years, according to new data from Cancer Research UK.
The charity is predicting that UK cancer rates will climb by around half a percent for men and by around three percent for women, which means an extra 4.5 million women and 4.8 million men will be diagnosed with the disease by 2035.
Specific cancer types are leading to this rise in women, including, ovarian, cervical and oral cancers where rates are predicted to rise the most over the next 20 years, it says. Also pushing the increase are lifestyle factors such as smoking and obesity, as several of the obesity-related cancer types only affect women.
The latest figures also show the global burden of cancer has reached an estimated 7.4 million men and an estimated 6.7 million women being diagnosed worldwide each year. The disease is the leading cause of death in the world, causing an estimated 8.2 million deaths in 2012 and around 15 percent of all deaths.
"These new figures reveal the huge challenge we continue to face, both in the UK and worldwide," said Sir Harpal Kumar, Cancer Research UK's chief executive. "With more investment into research, we hope to make big improvements over the next 20 years in diagnosing the disease earlier and improving and developing treatments so that by 2034, three in four people will survive their disease."