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Myelodysplastic Syndromes

New Cases

  • From 2006 to 2010, there were approximately 70,615 new cases of MDS throughout the United States, averaging an estimated 14,123 cases per year.

Types of MDS

The most common MDS subtype is refractory anemia with excess blasts (RAEB), 13.5 percent, followed by refractory anemia (RA), 10.6 percent.

People diagnosed with MDS not otherwise specified (MDS NOS) constitute 57.6 percent of all MDS cases.

People diagnosed with therapy-related MDS constitute less than 2 percent of all reported cases.


  • The overall incidence rate of MDS is 4.8 cases per 100,000 population.
  • Incidence by Gender

    • For the five-year period from 2006 to 2010 there were approximately 39,424 cases in males, averaging 7,885 per year, and approximately 31,191 cases in females, averaging 6,238 per year
    • This results in an incidence rate of 6.5 cases per 100,000 for males, and 3.7 cases per 100,000 for females.
    • MDS is most commonly diagnosed in males ages 80 years and older.

    Incidence by Race and Ethnicity

    • White males have the highest incidence rates (6.7 cases per 100,000).
    • Asian and Pacific Islander females (2.7 per 100,000 population) and American Indian and Alaska Native females (2.8 per 100,000 population) have the lowest incidence rates.


    The SEER program only recently began maintaining statistics for MDS. Prevalence and mortality statistics were not reported by SEER for MDS in 2013 at the time of this publication.


    Mortality rates were not reported by SEER for MDS in 2013 at the time of this publication.

    MDS facts and statistics from Facts 2013.

    last updated on Thursday, August 22, 2013

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