Soroka Hospital
Soroka Hospital Flash 90

More Israelis died from cancer in 2012, the latest year for which statistics were available, than from any other disease, according to data released Wednesday by the Central Bureau of Statistics. The second biggest cause of death was heart trouble, and these two conditions together were responsible for more than 40% of all deaths in Israel that year.

A total of 41,877 Israelis died in 2012, a number representing one half of one percent of the country's population that year. Of that number, 49.4% were male and 50.6% female. 81% of those who died were age 65 or older; of those, 65% were age 75 or older, and 36% over age 85. Six percent were under age 45, while 611 infants one year or younger, representing 1.5% of all deaths, died that year.

Fully 25.4% of the deaths that year – numbering 10,640 people -were due to cancer, while 14.9%, or 6,231, were victims of heart disease. In third place were strokes, which claimed 2,493 lives, 6% of all victims. That was followed by lung problems, including cancer, emphysema, etc., which claimed 5.7%, or 2,370, of the dead. In sixth place was diabetes, from which 2,287 people died, 5,5% of those who expired that year. Other causes of death included infections (4.3%), kidney problems (4.1%), and pneumonia (2.3%).

Broken down by religious/ethnic groupings, 25.9% of Jews died of cancer, compared to 20.7% of Arabs. Arabs also died from heart disease at the same ratio as Jews, but the incidence of Arab death from diabetes – 8.4% - was significantly higher than it was for Jews, the CBS said.

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