Key Statistics for Thyroid Cancer

How common is thyroid cancer?

The American Cancer Society’s most recent estimates for thyroid cancer in the United States for 2019 are:

  • About 52,070 new cases of thyroid cancer (14,260 in men and 37,810 in women)
  • About 2,170 deaths from thyroid cancer (1,020 men and 1,150 women)

The death rate from thyroid cancer has been fairly steady for many years, and remains very low compared with most other cancers. Statistics on survival rates for thyroid cancer are discussed in Thyroid Cancer Survival Rates, by Type and Stage.

Lifetime risk of thyroid cancer

Thyroid cancer is commonly diagnosed at a younger age than most other adult cancers. Nearly 3 out of 4 cases are found in women. About 2% of thyroid cancers occur in children and teens.

The chance of being diagnosed with thyroid cancer has risen in recent years and is the most rapidly increasing cancer in the US tripling in the past three decades. Much of this rise appears to be the result of the increased use of thyroid ultrasound, which can detect small thyroid nodules that might not otherwise have been found in the past.

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 oncology certified 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 2019. Atlanta, Ga: American Cancer Society; 2019.

Last Medical Review: March 31, 2016 Last Revised: January 9, 2019

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