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Circulatory system disease and cancer the biggest killers in Turkey


The Turkish Statistical Institute has just published figures related to causes of death for the 2013. When added to last year’s statistics covering 2010-2012 we gain a detailed picture into the effect of Turkey’s biggest killers over recent years.

Over 50% of the deaths in each of these four years were due to diseases of the circulatory system (mainly heart-attacks and cerebra-vascular disease) and cancer.

For 2013 nearly 40% of deaths were related to the circulatory system and just over 20% related to cancer.

Further breakdown is given by sex

Their published figures relate to the percentage of deaths from each disease. Incident rates in the whole population are reported on separately: last year’s figures were analysed in an article here.

The share of each cause of death in the total population mortality over the last 4 years has been pretty stable:

Further breakdown is given for each cause of death. Under the heading of circulatory diseases the main killer is of course the heart attack:

For cancer, the major killer is lung cancer and cancer of the respiratory system. This is not surprising given the high-rates of smoking in Turkey and the only relatively recent introduction of bans on smoking in public places:

Sadly these published figures show the second largest cause of cancer deaths to be “other”. Digging into the raw data on TUIK’s website reveals that while 31.3% of all cancer deaths in 2013 were from respiratory system and lung cancer, this unisex figure masks the very different experience between the sexes. A whopping 41.1% of male cancer deaths were due to this cause, compared with only 12.7% of females. “Other” accounts for 52.9% of female cancer deaths. It is to be presumed that this includes a large number of deaths due to breast, womb and cervical cancer.

Tags: death | cancer | heart disease | 2013 |
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