Tuesday, December 8, 2009

Cancer Diagnoses and Deaths Dropping Slowly But Steadily

New diagnoses for all types of cancer decreased almost 1% per year on average from 1999 to 2006, while cancer deaths decreased 1.6% per year from 2001 to 2006, according to a new government report.

The improvement is driven largely by declines in the big four cancer killers—lung, colon, prostate, and breast. Specialists attributed the declines to a reduction in the smoking rate, better and earlier detection, and improved treatments, particularly those that can be matched to a patient's specific tumor type. However, experts in the field warn that these successes could be wiped out in coming years by the nation's obesity crisis.

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