Skip to main content

Main Area

Main

States with the highest cancer rates

  • States with the highest cancer rates
    1/ Nihaochan // Wikicommons

    States with the highest cancer rates

    According to the National Cancer Institute, just over 1.7 million cases of cancer will be diagnosed in the United States this year. It’s a heartbreakingly familiar diagnosis, known for its insidious ubiquity — few degrees of separation typically exist between cancer patients. 2013-2015 data led the National Cancer Institute to estimate some 38.4% of men and women will be diagnosed with cancer in their lives. Those are neighbors, and family members.

    Cancer’s sheer scope translates to one small ray of light: people are trying very, very hard to find a cure.

    In 2017, the National Institutes of Health released figures showing U.S. government funding towards research of conditions, diseases, and areas. The top five funded areas included genetics, prevention, and neurosciences — general areas of research, in short. At #6, cancer was by far the most researched disease. Over $6 billion was spent by the government in 2017 alone; another $4.6 billion estimated to be spent in 2018. That doesn’t even take into account the millions and millions that goes into privately funded cancer research each year.

    And it’s working, at least to some extent. Mortality rates have consistently decreased throughout the 21st century for many types of cancer. But still, as one of the leading causes of death worldwide, cancer is a long way from being eradicated.

    But how do the numbers vary by region? Are individuals from certain states more or less cancer-prone than others?

    To answer this question, Stacker used data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention to identify the U.S. states that had the highest incidence rates of cancer in 2014. An incidence rate is the number of people out of 100,000 who are diagnosed with cancer in a given year, and is age-adjusted to the 2000 U.S. standard population. States are ranked in increasing order of incidence rates, with the last state on the list being that which showed the most diagnoses of cancer in 2014 out of 100,000 people.

    Feel like giving? Go to a site like CharityWatch and make a donation.

    ALSO: 30 celebrities who survived cancer

  • #51. New Mexico
    2/ PerryPlanet // Wikicommons

    #51. New Mexico

    Cancer incidents per 100,000 people: 369.9
    Deaths due to cancer per 100,000 people: 142.1 (#47 in the country)
    State population: 2,090,708

  • #50. Nevada
    3/ Famartin // Wikicommons

    #50. Nevada

    Cancer incidents per 100,000 people: 374.9
    Deaths due to cancer per 100,000 people: 164.7 (#26 in the country)
    State population: 3,056,824

  • #49. Arizona
    4/ Ianmcorvidae // Wikicommons

    #49. Arizona

    Cancer incidents per 100,000 people: 379.8
    Deaths due to cancer per 100,000 people: 142.5 (#46 in the country)
    State population: 7,123,898

  • #48. Colorado
    5/ Jeffrey Beall // Flickr

    #48. Colorado

    Cancer incidents per 100,000 people: 395.8
    Deaths due to cancer per 100,000 people: 136.5 (#50 in the country)
    State population: 5,684,203

  • #47. Utah
    6/ Chanilim714 // Wikicommons

    #47. Utah

    Cancer incidents per 100,000 people: 396
    Deaths due to cancer per 100,000 people: 127.8 (#51 in the country)
    State population: 3,159,345

  • #46. Wyoming
    7/ Nyttend // Wikicommons

    #46. Wyoming

    Cancer incidents per 100,000 people: 399.6
    Deaths due to cancer per 100,000 people: 141.1 (#48 in the country)
    State population: 573,720

  • #45. California
    8/ Robert Skolmen // Wikicommons

    #45. California

    Cancer incidents per 100,000 people: 399.6
    Deaths due to cancer per 100,000 people: 144.4 (#45 in the country)
    State population: 39,776,830

  • #44. Texas
    9/ Argash // Wikicommons

    #44. Texas

    Cancer incidents per 100,000 people: 402.2
    Deaths due to cancer per 100,000 people: 153.3 (#39 in the country)
    State population: 28,704,330

  • #43. Hawaii
    10/ Anthony Quintano // Flickr

    #43. Hawaii

    Cancer incidents per 100,000 people: 406
    Deaths due to cancer per 100,000 people: 139.4 (#49 in the country)
    State population: 1,426,393

  • #42. Alaska
    11/ Frank K. // Wikicommons

    #42. Alaska

    Cancer incidents per 100,000 people: 406.6
    Deaths due to cancer per 100,000 people: 165.7 (#25 in the country)
    State population: 738,068

  • #41. Oregon
    12/ MB298 // Wikicommons

    #41. Oregon

    Cancer incidents per 100,000 people: 409.6
    Deaths due to cancer per 100,000 people: 160.5 (#31 in the country)
    State population: 4,199,563

  • #40. Florida
    13/ Porsche997SBS // Wikicommons

    #40. Florida

    Cancer incidents per 100,000 people: 410
    Deaths due to cancer per 100,000 people: 152.2 (#41 in the country)
    State population: 21,312,211

  • #39. Virginia
    14/ James St. John // Flickr

    #39. Virginia

    Cancer incidents per 100,000 people: 416.5
    Deaths due to cancer per 100,000 people: 161.8 (#30 in the country)
    State population: 8,525,660

  • #38. Idaho
    15/ Andre Engels // Wikicommons

    #38. Idaho

    Cancer incidents per 100,000 people: 420.4
    Deaths due to cancer per 100,000 people: 155.4 (#38 in the country)
    State population: 1,753,860

  • #37. Montana
    16/ Sara goth // Wikicommons

    #37. Montana

    Cancer incidents per 100,000 people: 431.2
    Deaths due to cancer per 100,000 people: 156.2 (#34 in the country)
    State population: 1,062,330

  • #36. North Dakota
    17/ Bobak Ha'Eri // Wikicommons

    #36. North Dakota

    Cancer incidents per 100,000 people: 431.4
    Deaths due to cancer per 100,000 people: 151.8 (#43 in the country)
    State population: 755,238

  • #35. South Carolina
    18/ Khanrak // Wikicommons

    #35. South Carolina

    Cancer incidents per 100,000 people: 433.3
    Deaths due to cancer per 100,000 people: 171.7 (#14 in the country)
    State population: 5,088,916

  • #34. Indiana
    19/ Daderot// Wikicommons

    #34. Indiana

    Cancer incidents per 100,000 people: 435.8
    Deaths due to cancer per 100,000 people: 180 (#7 in the country)
    State population: 6,699,629

  • #33. Michigan
    20/ Mike Russell // Wikicommons

    #33. Michigan

    Cancer incidents per 100,000 people: 437.3
    Deaths due to cancer per 100,000 people: 173.8 (#13 in the country)
    State population: 9,991,177

  • #32. Alabama
    21/ Mx. Granger // Wikicommons

    #32. Alabama

    Cancer incidents per 100,000 people: 437.9
    Deaths due to cancer per 100,000 people: 177.7 (#11 in the country)
    State population: 4,888,949

  • #31. Maryland
    22/ NIH // Wikicommons

    #31. Maryland

    Cancer incidents per 100,000 people: 439.5
    Deaths due to cancer per 100,000 people: 162 (#28 in the country)
    State population: 6,079,602

  • #30. Oklahoma
    23/ Nightryder84 // Wikicommons

    #30. Oklahoma

    Cancer incidents per 100,000 people: 442
    Deaths due to cancer per 100,000 people: 179.7 (#8 in the country)
    State population: 3,940,521

  • #29. Washington
    24/ Ciar // Wikicommons

    #29. Washington

    Cancer incidents per 100,000 people: 442.1
    Deaths due to cancer per 100,000 people: 155.7 (#36 in the country)
    State population: 7,530,552

  • #28. Washington D.C.
    25/ U.S. Air Force Tech. Sgt. Andy Dunaway // Wikicommons

    #28. Washington D.C.

    Cancer incidents per 100,000 people: 442.4
    Deaths due to cancer per 100,000 people: 179.4 (#9 in the country)
    State population: 693,972

  • #27. Nebraska
    26/ Wikicommons

    #27. Nebraska

    Cancer incidents per 100,000 people: 443.6
    Deaths due to cancer per 100,000 people: 158.9 (#33 in the country)
    State population: 1,932,549

  • #26. Tennessee
    27/ Imilious // Wikicommons

    #26. Tennessee

    Cancer incidents per 100,000 people: 445.7
    Deaths due to cancer per 100,000 people: 184.3 (#5 in the country)
    State population: 6,782,564

  • #25. Missouri
    28/ ShawnCMH // Wikicommons

    #25. Missouri

    Cancer incidents per 100,000 people: 447
    Deaths due to cancer per 100,000 people: 177.3 (#12 in the country)
    State population: 6,135,888

  • #24. Vermont
    29/ Jonathanking // Wikicommons

    #24. Vermont

    Cancer incidents per 100,000 people: 447.2
    Deaths due to cancer per 100,000 people: 167.8 (#19 in the country)
    State population: 623,960

  • #23. North Carolina
    30/ Kaylonmk // Wikicommons

    #23. North Carolina

    Cancer incidents per 100,000 people: 448.8
    Deaths due to cancer per 100,000 people: 169.7 (#15 in the country)
    State population: 10,390,149

  • #22. Kansas
    31/ U.S. Army Corps of Engineers // Wikicommons

    #22. Kansas

    Cancer incidents per 100,000 people: 449.1
    Deaths due to cancer per 100,000 people: 166.6 (#21 in the country)
    State population: 2,918,515

  • #21. South Dakota
    32/ Seabear70 // Wikicommons

    #21. South Dakota

    Cancer incidents per 100,000 people: 450.1
    Deaths due to cancer per 100,000 people: 163.3 (#27 in the country)
    State population: 877,790

  • #20. Ohio
    33/ Cleveland Clinic // Wikicommons

    #20. Ohio

    Cancer incidents per 100,000 people: 452.1
    Deaths due to cancer per 100,000 people: 177.8 (#10 in the country)
    State population: 11,694,664

  • #19. Georgia
    34/ Matthew R. Lee // Wikicommons

    #19. Georgia

    Cancer incidents per 100,000 people: 453.4
    Deaths due to cancer per 100,000 people: 166.2 (#23 in the country)
    State population: 10,545,138

  • #18. Massachusetts
    35/ Gary Lerude // Flickr

    #18. Massachusetts

    Cancer incidents per 100,000 people: 453.8
    Deaths due to cancer per 100,000 people: 155.6 (#37 in the country)
    State population: 6,895,917

  • #17. Arkansas
    36/ Belinda Hankins Miller // Wikicommons

    #17. Arkansas

    Cancer incidents per 100,000 people: 456.2
    Deaths due to cancer per 100,000 people: 182.9 (#6 in the country)
    State population: 3,020,327

  • #16. Minnesota
    37/ McGhiever // Wikicommons

    #16. Minnesota

    Cancer incidents per 100,000 people: 457.7
    Deaths due to cancer per 100,000 people: 152.5 (#40 in the country)
    State population: 5,628,162

  • #15. Wisconsin
    38/ Chris Rand // Wikicommons

    #15. Wisconsin

    Cancer incidents per 100,000 people: 459
    Deaths due to cancer per 100,000 people: 161.8 (#29 in the country)
    State population: 5,818,049

  • #14. Illinois
    39/ Allen McGregor // Wikicommons

    #14. Illinois

    Cancer incidents per 100,000 people: 460.4
    Deaths due to cancer per 100,000 people: 169.2 (#18 in the country)
    State population: 12,768,320

  • #13. West Virginia
    40/ O Palsson // Wikicommons

    #13. West Virginia

    Cancer incidents per 100,000 people: 461
    Deaths due to cancer per 100,000 people: 194.7 (#2 in the country)
    State population: 1,803,077

  • #12. Mississippi
    41/ Ken Lund // Wikicommons

    #12. Mississippi

    Cancer incidents per 100,000 people: 462.1
    Deaths due to cancer per 100,000 people: 193 (#3 in the country)
    State population: 2,982,785

  • #11. New Hampshire
    42/ Mikespenard // Wikicommons

    #11. New Hampshire

    Cancer incidents per 100,000 people: 464.2
    Deaths due to cancer per 100,000 people: 159.8 (#32 in the country)
    State population: 1,350,575

  • #10. Connecticut
    43/ YNHHEditor // Wikicommons

    #10. Connecticut

    Cancer incidents per 100,000 people: 467
    Deaths due to cancer per 100,000 people: 146.8 (#44 in the country)
    State population: 3,588,683

  • #9. Rhode Island
    44/ Bestbudbrian // Wikicommons

    #9. Rhode Island

    Cancer incidents per 100,000 people: 469.8
    Deaths due to cancer per 100,000 people: 166.4 (#22 in the country)
    State population: 1,061,712

  • #8. Iowa
    45/ Patrick Hawks // Wikicommons

    #8. Iowa

    Cancer incidents per 100,000 people: 471.9
    Deaths due to cancer per 100,000 people: 165.8 (#24 in the country)
    State population: 3,160,553

  • #7. New Jersey
    46/ Ekem // Wikicommons

    #7. New Jersey

    Cancer incidents per 100,000 people: 472.8
    Deaths due to cancer per 100,000 people: 156.1 (#35 in the country)
    State population: 9,032,872

  • #6. Maine
    47/ Medic454 // Wikicommons

    #6. Maine

    Cancer incidents per 100,000 people: 474.6
    Deaths due to cancer per 100,000 people: 169.6 (#16 in the country)
    State population: 1,341,582

  • #5. New York
    48/ Kenneth Wilsey // Wikicommons

    #5. New York

    Cancer incidents per 100,000 people: 476.5
    Deaths due to cancer per 100,000 people: 152.1 (#42 in the country)
    State population: 19,862,512

  • #4. Pennsylvania
    49/ Tom Crane // Wikicommons

    #4. Pennsylvania

    Cancer incidents per 100,000 people: 477.3
    Deaths due to cancer per 100,000 people: 169.2 (#17 in the country)
    State population: 12,823,989

  • #3. Louisiana
    50/ Michael Maples, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers // Wikicommons

    #3. Louisiana

    Cancer incidents per 100,000 people: 478.7
    Deaths due to cancer per 100,000 people: 186.1 (#4 in the country)
    State population: 4,682,509

  • #2. Delaware
    51/ JERRYE & ROY KLOTZ MD // Wikicommons

    #2. Delaware

    Cancer incidents per 100,000 people: 488.1
    Deaths due to cancer per 100,000 people: 166.9 (#20 in the country)
    State population: 971,180

  • #1. Kentucky
    52/ Chris Watson // Wikicommons

    #1. Kentucky

    Cancer incidents per 100,000 people: 513.7
    Deaths due to cancer per 100,000 people: 199.1 (#1 in the country)
    State population: 4,472,265

2018 All rights reserved.