Oral cancer incidence rates for both sexes have shown a small but significant increase from the mid 2000s until the latest (2015–2019) National Cancer Institute survey. The oral cancer incidence rates for Blacks have decreased significantly over the past three decades for both sexes, but especially for males. The age-adjusted incidence rate for Black men (includes Hispanics) has decreased from a high of 31.5 cases (per 100,000) in 1987 to a low of 12.8 cases in Black men, and from a high of 12.8 cases (per 100,000) to 4.9 cases in Black women (includes Hispanics). However, it increased from 10.6 in 2004 to 18.4 for Whites (includes Hispanics) in the current estimates (2015–2019).
Table 1 presents oral cancer incidence rates for adult men and women of all age groups and for selected racial and ethnic groups.
Oral Cancer Incidence
- Overall, 11.5 adults per 100,000 will develop oral cancer.
- Oral cancer incidence rates are significantly higher for males than for females; the incidence rate for all ages in males is nearly three times greater for males than for females.
- Oral cancer incidence rates are higher for White males than for Hispanic and Black males.
- The incidence of oral cancer increases with age. The increase becomes more rapid after age 50, particularly for adults aged 65 years and older.
Table 1: Oral Cavity and Pharynx Cancer 5-year Incidence Rates by Age, Race, and Gender
|Race||Gender||All Ages||<15 year||15—39 years||40—64 years||65—74 years||75+ years|
|American Indian/Alaska Native||All||11.0||0.0||1.6||1.2||39.4||33.3|
|American Indian/Alaska Native||Male||17.7||0.0||-||31.5||67.9||48.8|
|American Indian/Alaska Native||Female||5.4||0.0||-||8.1||16.5||22.7|
|White, includes Hispanic||All||12.1||0.1||1.3||18.7||46.7||47.8|
|White, includes Hispanic||Male||18.4||0.1||1.4||28.6||73.3||71.3|
|White, includes Hispanic||Female||6.6||0.2||1.2||9.0||23.0||30.9|
|Black, includes Hispanic||All||8.3||0.2||1.3||13.6||31.1||27.2|
|Black, includes Hispanic||Male||12.8||0.2||1.3||20.4||51.7||44.5|
|Black, includes Hispanic||Female||4.9||-||1.2||7.8||15.8||17.2|
Source: Surveillance, Epidemiology, and End Results (SEER) Program, based on SEER 22 areas: San Francisco, Connecticut, Hawaii, Iowa, New Mexico, Seattle, Utah, Atlanta, San Jose-Monterey, Los Angeles, Alaska Native Registry, Rural Georgia, California (excluding San Francisco, San Jose-Monterey, and Los Angeles), Kentucky, Louisiana, New Jersey, Georgia (excluding Atlanta and rural Georgia), Idaho, New York, Massachusetts, Illinois, and Texas.
- Estimates based on less than 16 cases are not shown.
- Rates are per 100,000 and are age adjusted to the 2000 U.S. Std population (19 age groups – Census P25-1130).
- Rates for American Indians/Alaska Natives only include cases that are in a Purchased/Referred Care Delivery Area (PRCDA).
- Incidence data for Hispanics and Non-Hispanics are based on NAACCR Hispanic Latin Identification Algorithm (NHIA).