Breast Cancer Statistics in Malaysia



The importance of addressing this situation has become all the more urgent given that breast cancer has now overtaken lung cancer as the world’s mostly commonly-diagnosed cancer, and is responsible for one in six of all cancer deaths among women, according to statistics released by the International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC) in December 2020.

Breast Cancer Statistics in Malaysia 1
Breast Cancer Statistics in Malaysia 2
Breast Cancer Statistics in Malaysia 3

The figure above shows the 5-year overall survival rates for women diagnosed in 2007-2011 in UMMC. (Taib NA et al. 2011).

Breast Cancer Statistics in Malaysia 4
  • Another study reported a 5-year overall survival rate of  93.6%, 76%, 44%, 9.3% for Stage I, II, III and IV, respectively, in a hospital-based cohort diagnosed between 1995 to 2003 in Malaysia and Singapore.

  • Malaysia SCAN in 2018 reported 5-year relative survival rates in Malaysia were: 87.5%, 80.7%, 59.7% and 23.3% for Stage I, II,III and IV breast cancer.

  • The variations are likely due to inconsistencies is the effect of time differences in type of treatments and in staging, as not all patients in government hospitals have access to Ctscans. Furthermore, relative survival is not the same as overall survival.

  • References:

  • 1. Taib NA, Akmal MN, Mohamed I, Yip CH. Improvement in survival of breast cancer patients – trends over two time periods in a single institution in an Asia Pacific country, Malaysia. Asian Pac J Cancer Prev. 2011;12:345-9.

  • 2. Pathy NB, Yip CH, Taib NA, Hartman M, Saxena N, Iau P, Bulgiba AM, Lee SC, Lim SE, Wong JE, Verkooijen HM; Singapore-Malaysia Breast Cancer Working Group. Breast cancer in a multi-ethnic Asian setting: results from the Singapore-Malaysia hospital-based breast cancer registry. Breast. 2011 Apr;20 Suppl 2:S75-80. doi: 10.1016/j.breast.2011.01.015. Epub 2011 Feb 12. PMID: 21316967.

  • 3. National Cancer Registry, National Cancer Institute, Ministry of Health Malaysia (2018). Malaysian Study on Cancer Survival (MySCan). This book is also available in electronic format at