More Than 650,000 Cancer Deaths Avoided
Decline in Cancer Death Rate Means 650,400 Fewer Cancer Deaths Between 1991-1992 and 2005
May 27, 2009 -- The American Cancer Society today announced that 650,400 U.S. cancer deaths were avoided from the early 1990s through 2005.
That news appears in the early online edition of CA: A Cancer Journal for Clinicians.
The report shows a 19% drop in men's overall cancer death rates between 1990 and 2005 and a decline of about 11% in women's overall cancer death rates between 1991 and 2005.
Those declines reflect a long-term, gradual decline in cancer death rates, which trace back to a drop in certain cancers and better screening and survival for certain cancers.
"A drop of 1% or 2% per year in the cancer mortality rate may sound small, but as this report shows, that adds up," John R. Seffrin, PhD, the American Cancer Society's chief executive officer, says in a news release.
"Because the rate continues to drop, it means that in recent years, about 100,000 people each year who would have died if cancer death rates had not declined are living to celebrate another birthday. That is undeniable evidence of the lifesaving progress that we as a country must dedicate ourselves to continuing," Seffrin says.
Still, cancer remains the top cause of death for people younger than 85 (heart disease is the leading cause of death for all age groups combined).
The American Cancer Society estimates that about 562,340 people will die of cancer in 2009, which is more than 1,500 cancer deaths per day.
Men's Top Cancers
Prostate cancer will remain men's most commonly diagnosed cancer, according to the American Cancer Society.
Here is the American Cancer Society's estimate of new cases of cancer among U.S. men in 2009 (not including nonmelanoma skin cancer and in situ (noninvasive) cancers.
- Prostate cancer: 192,280 new cases
- Lung cancer: 116,090 new cases
- Colorectal cancer: 75,590 new cases
- Bladder cancer: 52,810 new cases
- Melanoma: 39,080 new cases
- Non-Hodgkin's lymphoma: 35,990 new cases
- Kidney cancer: 35,430 new cases
- Leukemia: 25,630 new cases
- Cancer of the oral cavity and pharynx: 25,240 new cases
- Pancreatic cancer: 21,050 new cases
Lung cancer is expected to remain men's most common cause of cancer death in 2009, according to the American Cancer Society:
- Lung cancer: 88,900 deaths
- Prostate cancer: 27,360 deaths
- Colorectal cancer: 25,240 deaths
- Pancreatic cancer: 18,030 deaths
- Leukemia: 12,590 deaths
- Liver cancer: 12,090 deaths
- Esophageal cancer: 11,490 deaths
- Bladder cancer: 10,180 deaths
- Non-Hodgkin's lymphoma: 9,830 deaths
- Kidney cancer: 8,160 deaths
Women's Top Cancers
Breast cancer is expected to be the most commonly diagnosed cancer among U.S. women, but lung cancer will be women's deadliest cancer, the American Cancer Society predicts.