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ASGE Applauds News of Drop in Colorectal Cancer Deaths
Date:10/15/2007

Prevention through screening and removal of precancerous polyps among key factors in saving lives

Oak Brook, Ill., Oct. 15 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- The American Society for Gastrointestinal Endoscopy (ASGE) heralds the recent news of a decline in U.S. cancer death rates, with the biggest decrease occurring in colorectal cancer deaths. ASGE, representing the specialists in colorectal cancer screening, is excited by the report showing that among the leading causes of cancer deaths -- lung, prostate, breast and colorectal cancer -- colorectal cancer showed the largest decline, down 4.9 percent for men and 4.5 percent for women (2002-2004).

The study, issued by the American Cancer Society, the National Cancer Institute, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, and the North American Association of Central Cancer Registries, shows a drop of 2.1 percent each year between 2002 and 2004 in cancer death rates for the majority of the 15 most commonly diagnosed cancers in men and women. Previous studies showed U.S. cancer death rates decreasing an average of 1.1 percent per year from 1993 to 2002. After steadily decreasing for many years, the decline in colorectal cancer death rates has accelerated. The concurrent declines in colorectal cancer mortality and incidence are likely associated with preventing colorectal cancer through screening and removal of precancerous polyps, improving cancer outcomes by earlier stage diagnosis, reducing exposure to risk factors, and improving cancer treatment.

"This is excellent news and reinforces the importance of colorectal cancer screening beginning at age 50, or even younger if there is a family history of colorectal cancer or polyps," said Mark Pochapin, MD, spokesperson for the ASGE. "Colorectal cancer is a preventable and treatable disease when diagnosed in its early stages. Colonoscopy plays a very important role in colorectal cancer screening and prevention because it is the only method that is bo
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SOURCE American Society for Gastrointestinal Endoscopy
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