Cancer Death Rates Declining in the United States

The number of Americans who die from cancer is on the decline as preventive measures, better screening methods and more effective treatments have combined over the past few decades to produce strong results. The morality rate, in fact, dropped by more than 1.7 million cancer deaths between a peak in 1991 and 2012. The findings were published by the American Cancer Society in its 2016 Cancer Statistics report.

The report finds that the overall cancer incidence rate in women is stable and has declined by 3.1 percent per year in men over the period of 2009 to 2012. The decline in men is largely associated with a decline in prostate cancer diagnoses that may be associated with a decrease in the amount of prostate-specific antigen tests being performed.

Cancer-related mortality rates among men and women alike are down, the report also found. The rate for men dropped over the past decade of available data by 1.8 percent. For women, the death was down by 1.4 percent. The declines are largely attributed to a reduction in death rates related to prostate, lung, breast and colon cancer.

The findings are extremely good news in the war on cancer, but they don’t signal an end for the battle. People are still urged to do their parts by taking preventative measures, such as eating right, exercising, refraining from tobacco use and undergoing routine screening. The types of screening suggestion will vary based on sex, age and family history, among other factors.

People who are diagnosed with most forms of cancer will find that treatments have advanced tremendously over the past few decades. Many forms of cancer that were once considered highly deadly are now treatable when caught early. This supports the need for routine screening to aid with early detection. Everyone is urged to talk to their healthcare providers about their personal cancer risks and what steps they may be able to take to lower them.

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