Colorectal cancer (CRC) is a major public health problem, with over a million newly diagnosed cases per year worldwide. CRC occurs especially frequently in established market economies like Europe, the United States (US), Canada, Australia and Japan. The lifetime incidence in average risk individuals in these regions is approximately 5%. CRC incidence steeply increases with age, and it is higher in men than in women. At young ages, CRC is rare, and often associated with a genetic predisposition. In the US, the CRC incidence has been decreasing and is now lower than in the Netherlands. In the Netherlands, the number of newly diagnosed CRC cases has increased to 12,000 per year, accounting for 5,000 deaths per year. This makes CRC the second leading cause of cancer death for men and the third for women in the Netherlands.

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Publication of this thesis was financially supported by the Department of Public Health Erasmus MC Rotterdam and Erasmus University Rotterdam
J.D.F. Habbema (Dik) , E.J. Kuipers (Ernst)
Erasmus University Rotterdam
Erasmus MC: University Medical Center Rotterdam

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