With news headlines currently dominated by the Covid-19 outbreak, it could be easy to overlook other health stories worthy of note. That’s why we are pleased to share that cancer rates in the United States are continuing to fall, according to a new report.
As outlined in the Annual Report to the Nation on the Status of Cancer, cancer rates in the U.S. continued falling from 2001 to 2017 – dropping, on average, by 1.5% a year. Furthermore, new cancer diagnoses have decreased at an average annual rate of 0.6% over the same period.
Interestingly, the annual decline in mortality was slightly more pronounced among men (1.8%) than women (1.4%); nevertheless, decreases were seen across all major racial/ethnic groups and among adults, teens and children alike.
Among men, mortality rates fell for 11 of the 19 most common cancers. They remained stable for four cancers, including prostate. And increased for another four: mouth, pharynx, soft tissue and pancreas.
Among women, mortality rates fell for 14 of the 20 most common cancers, including the top three: lung, breast and colon. However, an increase in mortality rates was seen in cancers of the uterus, liver, brain, soft tissue and pancreas. Mouth and pharynx cancer rates remained stable.
Despite mortality rates decreasing by 4.8% a year in men and 3.7% in women, lung cancer remains the number one cause of cancer death in the United States.
Commenting on the findings of the report, U.S. Centers for Disease Control director, Dr. Robert Redfield, said: “The United States continues to make significant progress in cancer prevention, early detection, and treatment.”