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Most Common Types of Cancer in Filipino Men

Medically reviewed by John Paul Abrina, MD · Oncology · Davao Doctors Hospital

Written by Kip Soliva · Updated Feb 17, 2022

Most Common Types of Cancer in Filipino Men

Cancer is one of the most common causes of death all around the world.  It affects both men and women.  The International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC) released a new report stating that the global cancer burden is expected to reach 18.1 million new cases and recorded 9.6 million deaths in 2018. Cancer in the Philippines is also prevalent. Read on to learn more.

There are several factors why there is a growing cancer burden. It includes aging and population growth. But also included is the increasing occurrence of several causes of cancer connected to social and economic factors. According to the IARC, it’s particularly true, especially in rapidly growing economies. There’s an observable shift from cancers associated with infections and poverty to cancers linked to the lifestyles of individuals from industrialized countries.

Based on the data from the Philippine Statistics Authority, one out of ten deaths in the country is from cancer. The Philippine Cancer Society Inc. (PCSI) also reported 91% of people aged 35 years and above, have the most occurrence of cancer. The PCSI also mentioned that females have a higher incidence of cancer than males. It is because of the increasing breast cancer statistics Philippines.

In this article, we will focus on the types of cancer in the Philippines most prevalent in Filipino men.

The following are the most common types of cancer more likely to occur to Filipino men.

Common Types of Cancer in the Philippines Among Men

1. Cancer in the Philippines: Lung Cancer

Filipino men experience various health problems, and one of them is lung cancer. It is the top new cancer diagnosis in Filipino males, and it also causes the most number of deaths.

This disease is often the result of being exposed to particles and chemicals in the air. Smoking is one of the leading causes of this disease. The best way to reduce the risk of having this disease is to quit smoking or to never start this unhealthy habit. However, not all people diagnosed with lung cancer are smokers. Some can be quitters, and some may have never smoked at all.

Unfortunately, not all lung cancers can be prevented. The good thing is, there are various ways you can lower your risk. If you’re not a smoker, don’t start. Also, as much as possible, stay away from people who are smoking to avoid breathing in their smoke, as secondhand smoke can increase your chances of developing lung cancer.

2. Cancer in the Philippines: Colorectal Cancer

Colorectal cancer is that occurs in the the colon or the rectum. These two areas constitute the large intestine that further processes the food that we eat for absorption and ultimately, excretion.

In 2020, The Global Cancer Observatory reported that the second highest number of new cancer cases in males in the Philippines were colorectal cancer cases.

Some factors that increase the risk of colorectal cancer include being obese or overweight, a diet high in processed and red meat and low in fiber, physical inactivity, heavy alcohol intake, smoking, aging, and family or personal history of polyps or cancer, and tobacco use.

Most cases of colorectal cancer begin with a polyp. It is a tiny growth on the lining of the rectum or colon. This disease is more easily treated if detected early. Thus, screening plays an important role. However, in the Philippines colorectal cancer is the fifth leading cause of cancer deaths.

Worried about colorectal cancer? Try our screener:

3. Cancer in the Philippines: Prostate Cancer

Prostate cancer is the third most common among new cancer cases in Filipino men. It is the third most common cause of cancer deaths in the Philippines. Usually, most cases of prostate cancer are detected in men ages 65 and above.

The prostate is part of the male reproductive system. It normally produces fluid that forms part of the semen.

The most common risk factor of prostate cancer is age: the older you get, the higher your chances of getting prostate cancer. There are also higher risks of having prostate cancer if the person has close family memvers diagnosed with prostate cancer.

For detection, men can choose to take the prostate-specific antigen (PSA) blood test. The PSA is a substance that is normally produced by the prostate. It may be abnormally elevated in cases of prostate cancer.

In addition, your doctor may opt to perform a digital rectal examination (DRE) wherein a gloved, lubricated finger is inserted into a man’s rectum to examine the prostate gland directly. A digital rectal examination can also be a part of the screening. The PSA level, preferences, values, and general health of an individual is the basis of how often he should be tested.

4. Cancer in the Philippines: Liver Cancer

Liver cancer is the fourth most commonly diagnosed cancer in Filipino men. It is also the fourth leading cause of cancer deaths in the Philippines.

The liver is the largest solid organ in the human body. It serves a variety of functions including the storage of nutrients, removal of waste products from circulation, the processing of substances from food and medications, and production of bile which helps in the digestion of fat.

Long-term damage to the liver causes liver cancer. Viruses such as hepatitis B and C may cause damage. Other causes of liver damage are excessive alcohol use, obesity, and diabetes. Prevent liver cancer through hepatitis B and C vaccinations and avoiding excessive amounts of alcohol.

Cancer in the Philippines: Prevention

The best way to lower the risk of getting cancer is to know how to prevent it. We prepared a list of some helpful prevention tips you can do to reduce the risk of cancer.

  • Do not use tobacco products. Many types of cancer, including mouth, esophageal, bladder, cervical, throat, breast, colorectal, and lung, are associated with tobacco products. Take note that secondhand smokers are also at risk.
  • Eat a healthy and balanced diet. Include vegetables, beans, fruits, and whole-grain in your diet. Cut out processed food and limit red meat if possible. It’s also essential to limit alcohol consumption as it increases the risk of breast, colorectal, and liver cancer.
  • Be physically active and maintain a healthy weight. Give yourself at least 30 minutes of exercise and physical activity each day. It will make a huge difference in your overall health and well-being. Obesity and inactivity have been linked to colorectal, pancreatic, lung, and breast cancer.

Key takeaway

Cancer is one of the four lifestyle-related diseases (LDRs) or epidemic non-communicable diseases (NCDs). The others include chronic respiratory diseases, diabetes mellitus, and cardiovascular diseases. Men and women should be proactive on how to prevent and lower the risk of having cancer. Always keep in mind that prevention is better than cure.

Learn more about Cancer here.


Hello Health Group does not provide medical advice, diagnosis or treatment.

Medically reviewed by

John Paul Abrina, MD

Oncology · Davao Doctors Hospital

Written by Kip Soliva · Updated Feb 17, 2022

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