Australian men are more likely to die from melanoma than anyone else in the world, perhaps because they are not involved with a safe sun campaign, research presented at the cancer conference shows.
Based on WHO data from 33 countries, the mortality rate was highest for Australians, with 5.7 deaths recorded per 100,000 men between 2013 and 2015.
However, data for this period is not available for the US, Canada and New Zealand.
Men in other countries should not breathe a sigh of relief, according to a presentation by Dr. Dorothy Yang of the Royal Free London NHS Foundation Trust at the National Cancer Research Institute conference in Scotland.
The mortality rate is higher for men than for women in all countries
The study was based on 1985-2015 data and was aimed at identifying whether a new preventive, diagnostic, and treatment regime had an impact on the age standard mortality rate.
Dr. Yang said he and his colleagues could continue to examine the data to try and identify factors that could explain gender differences.
"There is evidence that men tend not to protect themselves from the sun or engage in awareness campaigns and prevention of melanoma.
"There is also ongoing work looking for biological factors that underlie differences in mortality rates between men and women."
Dr. Yang and his team also found:
- Australian women have the second highest mortality rate for melanoma (2.5 deaths per 100,000 women) and they are not far behind Slovenia's leading country (2.6 deaths per 100,000 women) between 2013 and 2015.
- Swedish men and women also had high melanoma mortality rates during the same period (3.4 and 2.1 respectively).
- Japan has the lowest mortality rate for men (0.24 per 100,000) and women (0.18 per 100,000) between 2013 and 15
- The Czech Republic is the only country that records a decrease in melanoma mortality rates for men. Death rates fell by 0.7% on average each year during the 30-year study period
- The Czech Republic and Israel recorded the biggest decline in deaths for women (23% and 16%, respectively) between 1985 and 2015.
Further information: 2018 Cancer NCRI abstract Conference