Cancer is No. 1 cause of death in Israel

Cancers, followed by heart diseases are the biggest causes of mortality in Israel.

November 25, 2015 18:39
1 minute read.
A scientist prepares protein samples for analysis in a lab

A scientist prepares protein samples for analysis in a lab at the Institute of Cancer Research in Sutton. (photo credit: REUTERS)


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The most common cause of death in 2013 was cancer, followed by cardiovascular diseases, according to a new report issued Wednesday by the Central Bureau of Statistics.

But death rates from these two causes and from stroke have declined by 80 percent since the middle of the 1970s – and they are relatively low compared to those in most OECD countries.

Even the rate of cancer in the respiratory system, including the lungs – the most common malignancy among Israeli men and largely caused by tobacco smoking – is lower than in most OECD countries. Breast cancer is most common among Israeli women and the rate is relatively high compared to other advanced countries, the CBS said.

Deaths from infectious and kidney diseases and from complications of diabetes is relatively high here compared to the OECD countries.

Of the 41,479 Israelis who died in 2013, 49.4% were male and 50.6% female. Eighty percent of those who perished were 65 years and over, while 65% were over 75 and 36% over 85, showing the population’s admirable longevity.

Six percent of those who died were under 45 years old, and 1.3% were babies who died before their first birthday.

External causes such as suicides, accidents and murders were the third most common cause of death among Israeli men and eighth among women. Road accidents were three times more common among men than women, while murders were 2.8 times more common among males.

Malignancies caused 26.2% of Jewish deaths, while cancers were responsible for only 20.5% among Arab Israelis.

Complications of diabetes caused a higher rate of death among Arabs than Jews. Murders of Arabs were 3.3 more common than among Jews.

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