Sunday, February 5, 2012

Cancer Statistics 2011 report finds that progress does not benefit all segments of the same population

A steady decline in overall cancer mortality rate means for avoiding of about 898 000 cancer deaths between 1990 and 2007, according to latest statistics from the American Cancer Society. However, the report, Cancer Statistics 2011, and escort customers Cancer Facts & Figures 2011 publication finds that progress does not benefit all segments of the same population. A special section of the report finds cancer death rate for individuals with minimal education is more than twice those of the most educated and that closing the loophole that could prevent 37% - or 60,370 - of the cancer deaths that occur early in the year 2007 at the age of 25 -64 years.

Each year, the American Cancer Society estimates the number of new cancer cases and deaths expected in the United States in the current year and compiles the most recent data on cancer incidence, mortality, and survival based on incidence data from the National Cancer Institute, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, and the North American Association of Central Cancer Registries and mortality data from the National Center for Health Statistics.

A total of 1.59667 million new cancer cases and 571 950 cancer deaths are projected to occur in the U.S. in 2011. Overall cancer incidence rates stabilized in men in the most recent time period after a decline of 1.9% per year from 2001 to 2005; in women, incidence rates have decreased by 0.6% per year since 1998. Overall cancer death rates, which have been dropping since the early 1990s, continued to decline in all racial / ethnic groups in both men and women since 1998 with the exception of American Indian / Alaska Native women, among them a steady rate. African American men and Hispanics showed the largest annual decline in cancer death rates during this period, 2.6% and 2.5%, respectively. Rate of lung cancer mortality showed a significant reduction in women after increasing since the 1930s.

Cancer Statistics 2011 is published online at the beginning of CA: A Cancer Journal for Clinicians. Other highlights from the report include:

  • Among men, lung cancer, prostate, and bronchus, and colorectum account for over half (approximately 52%) of all newly diagnosed cancers. Prostate cancer alone accounts for 29% (240 890) of incident cases in men.
  • The three types most commonly diagnosed cancer among women in 2011 were breast, lung and bronchus, and colorectum, accounting for about 53% of estimated cancer cases in women. Breast cancer alone is expected to account for 30% (230 480) of all new cancer cases in women.
  • Lifetime probability of being diagnosed with invasive cancer is higher for males (44%) than women (38%).
  • It is estimated that approximately 571 950 Americans will die from cancer, according to more than 1,500 deaths per day.
  • Lung and bronchus, prostate, and colorectum in men, and cancers of the lung and bronchus, breast, and colorectum in women continue to be the most common cause of cancer death. These four cancers account for almost half of total cancer deaths among men and women.
  • Lung cancer is expected to account for 26% of all cancer deaths among women in 2011.
  • Lung cancer mortality in women finally began to decline, more than a decade later than the decline began in the male. Lag in trends of lung cancer in women compared with men reflects the later uptake of smoking in women, among them smoking peaked about 20 years later than in men.
  • New rapid decline in colorectal cancer incidence rates primarily reflects an increase in screening that can detect and remove precancerous polyps.
  • Overall cancer death rate decreased by 1.9% per year 2001-2007 in men and 1.5% in women from 2002-2007, compared with a smaller decline of 1.5% per year in men and 1993-2001 0.8% per year in women 1994-2002.
  • Between 1990/1991 and 2007, cancer death rates decreased by 22.2% in men and 13.9% in women.
  • The death rate continued to decline for the colorectum, breast, and prostate cancer.
  • Among men, the decline in death rates for lung, prostate, and colorectal cancers account for almost 80% of total cancer mortality, while among women, the decline in mortality rates for breast and colorectal cancers account for nearly 60% decline.

"The death of nearly 900,000 avoided cancer over a period of 17 stands in contrast to the repeated claims that cancer mortality rates did not move," said John R. Seffrin, Ph.D., CEO of the American Cancer Society and its advocacy affiliate, the American Cancer Society Action Network (ACS CAN). "However, we refuse to be satisfied, and committed to do anything, not just to make sure the cancer death rate continues to decline, but to accelerate the decline."

Special section features reports on the impact of eliminating disparities in cancer mortality. Educational level is often used as a marker of socioeconomic status. In 2007, cancer death rates in the educated segment of the population was 2.6 times higher than the most educated. This difference was greatest for lung cancer, where the death rate five times higher in people who are less educated than the most educated. Differences in mortality rates of lung cancer reflects striking gradient in smoking prevalence by education level, 31% of men with 12 or fewer years of education were current smokers, compared with 12% of college graduates and 5% of men with a bachelor's degree.

Special section also estimates the number of potential premature deaths from cancer that can be avoided in the absence of socioeconomic inequalities and / or race. If all adults aged 25-64 in the United States in 2007 has a cancer mortality rate of non-Hispanic whites are the most educated, 37% - or 60 370 of the 164 190 premature deaths from cancer, could potentially be avoided. For African Americans, closing the gap between the mortality rate among the most educated and most potentially prevents twice as many premature deaths from cancers such as eliminating racial disparities between blacks and whites, underlining the poverty gap in cancer predominant in all segments of the population.

The annual report has become an important tool for scientists, public health experts, and policymakers in assessing the current burden of cancer. This is a statistical estimate of the most widely quoted cancer in the world. Society's leading team of epidemiologic researchers, in collaboration with scientists from the National Cancer Institute, compiles and analyzes incidence and mortality data to estimate the number of new cancer cases and deaths for the current year nationwide and in individual countries.

The figures are expected from new cancer cases and cancer deaths should be interpreted with caution because these estimates are based on a statistical model and can vary from year to year. Not all changes in cancer trends can be captured by modeling techniques and sometimes the model may be too sensitive to recent trends, which produce over-or under-estimated. For this reason, the estimates should not be compared from year to year to determine trends, age-standardized cancer incidence and mortality rates are the best way to monitor changes in cancer occurrence and death. Despite these limitations, the American Cancer Society estimates the number of new cancer cases and deaths in the current year provide reasonably accurate estimates of the burden of new cancer cases and deaths in the United States. These estimates will assist ongoing efforts to reduce the public health burden of cancer.

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