Skin Cancer (Non-Melanoma): Statistics

Approved by the Cancer.Net Editorial Board, 12/2016

ON THIS PAGE: You will find information about the number of people who are diagnosed with non-melanoma skin cancer each year. You will also read general information on surviving the disease. Remember, survival rates depend on several factors. Use the menu to see other pages.

By far, skin cancer is the most common type of cancer. Because non-melanoma skin cancer is so common and often curable, statistics are estimated because individual cases are not usually reported to cancer registries.

It is estimated that more than 3 million people in the United States are diagnosed with non-melanoma skin cancer each year. Basal cell carcinoma is far more common than squamous cell carcinoma. About 80% of non-melanoma skin cancer is the basal cell carcinoma type. 

About 2,000 people die from basal cell and squamous cell skin cancer each year. For melanoma, about 9,320 deaths will occur this year. For other, less common types of skin cancer, about 4,140 deaths will occur this year.

It is important to remember that statistics on non-melanoma skin cancer are an estimate. The estimate comes from annual data based on the number of people with this cancer in the United States. People should talk with their doctor if they have any questions about this information. Learn more about understanding statistics.

Statistics adapted from the American Cancer Society's (ACS) publication, Cancer Facts & Figures 2018, and the ACS website.

The next section in this guide is Medical Illustrations. It offers drawings of body parts often affected by non-melanoma skin cancer. Use the menu to choose a different section to read in this guide.