Key Statistics for Bladder Cancer

How common is bladder cancer?

The American Cancer Society’s estimates for bladder cancer in the United States for 2018 are:

  • About 81,190 new cases of bladder cancer (about 62,380 in men and 18,810 in women)
  • About 17,240 deaths from bladder cancer (about 12,520 in men and 4,720 in women)

The rates of new bladder cancers and of cancer deaths and have been dropping slightly in women in recent years. In men, incidence rates have been decreasing and death rates have been stable.

Bladder cancer is the fourth most common cancer in men, but it is less common in women.

Risk of bladder cancer

Bladder cancer occurs mainly in older people. About 9 out of 10 people with this cancer are over the age of 55. The average age at the time of diagnosis is 73.

Overall, the chance men will develop this cancer during their life is about 1 in 27. For women, the chance is about 1 in 89. (But each person’s chances of getting bladder cancer can be affected by certain risk factors.)

Whites are more likely to be diagnosed with bladder cancer than African Americans or Hispanic Americans.

Extent of cancer at the time of diagnosis

About half of all bladder cancers are first found while the cancer is still confined to the inner layer of the bladder wall. (These are called non-invasive or in situ cancers.) About 1 in 3 bladder cancers have invaded into deeper layers but are still only in the bladder. In most of the remaining cases, the cancer has spread to nearby tissues or lymph nodes outside the bladder. Rarely (in about 4% of cases), it has spread to distant parts of the body. Black patients are slightly more likely to have more advanced disease when they are diagnosed, compared to whites.

Survival statistics are discussed in Survival rates for bladder cancer, by stage.

Visit the American Cancer Society’s Cancer Statistics Center for more key statistics.

The American Cancer Society medical and editorial content team
Our team is made up of doctors and master's-prepared nurses with deep knowledge of cancer care as well as journalists, editors, and translators with extensive experience in medical writing.

American Cancer Society. Cancer Facts & Figures 2018. Atlanta, Ga: American Cancer Society; 2018.

Howlader N, Noone AM, Krapcho M, Miller D, Bishop K, Kosary CL, Yu M, Ruhl J, Tatalovich Z, Mariotto A, Lewis DR, Chen HS, Feuer EJ, Cronin KA (eds). SEER Cancer Statistics Review, 1975-2014, National Cancer Institute. Bethesda, MD, https://seer.cancer.gov/csr/1975_2014/, based on November 2016 SEER data submission, posted to the SEER web site, April 2017.

Cancer Stat Facts: Bladder Cancer, 2010-2014.  National Cancer Institute, Bethesda, MD.  https://seer.cancer.gov/statfacts/html/lungb.html. Accessed on January 5, 2018.

Last Medical Review: January 26, 2016 Last Revised: January 4, 2018

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