A new report published online in the journal Cancer cited that incidence and mortality rates from all cancers combined declined significantly in the most recent time period for men and women overall and for most racial and ethnic US populations. The authors were researchers from the National Cancer Institute, part of the National Institutes of Health, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the American Cancer Society, and the North American Association of Central Cancer Registries. The overall drops are driven largely by declines in rates of new cases and death for the 3 most common cancers in men (lung, prostate, and colorectal cancers) and for 2 of the 3 leading cancers in women (breast and colorectal cancer). New diagnoses for all types of cancer combined in the United States decreased, on average, almost 1% per year from 1999 to 2006. Cancer deaths decreased 1.6% per year from 2001 to 2006. Overall cancer rates continue to be higher for men than for women, but men experienced the greatest declines in incidence and mortality rates. For colorectal cancer, the third most frequently diagnosed cancer in both men and women, and the second leading cause of US cancer deaths, overall rates are declining, but increasing incidence in men and women under 50 years of age is of concern, according to the report. Other highlights from the report show that in men, incidence rates have declined for cancers of the prostate, lung, oral cavity, stomach, brain, colon and rectum, but continue to rise for kidney/renal, liver, and esophageal cancer, as well as for leukemia, myeloma, and melanoma. In women, incidence rates decreased for breast, colorectal, uterine, ovarian, cervical and oral cavity cancers, but increased for lung, thyroid, pancreatic, bladder, and kidney cancers, as well as for non-Hodgkin lymphoma, melanoma, and leukemia. With accelerated cancer control efforts, there could be an overall colorectal cancer mortality reduction of 50% by 2020.
(Source: CDC, December 7, 2009)