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Analysis of cancer incidence, mortality and survival combined reveals encouraging European trends
Date:7/1/2008

The first research to look at recent trends in European cancer incidence, mortality and survival together has shown that cancer prevention and management in Europe is moving in the right direction. However, the research reveals that variations between countries in policies for mass screening, access to health care and treatment are reflected in the different cancer rates.

The research is published in a special issue of the European Journal of Cancer (the official journal of ECCO the European CanCer Organisation) on cancer control [1] and coincides with the start of work by the European Commission to draw up a new EU Cancer Action Plan. The co-editors of the issue, Jan Willem Coebergh and Tit Albreht, expect the special issue to inform the discussions during the drawing up of the Cancer Action Plan, as well as providing information for an updated version of the European Cancer Code.

In "Recent trends in cancer in Europe: a combined approach of incidence, survival and mortality for 17 cancer sites since the 1990s", one of ten papers published in the EJC special issue, Prof Coebergh and his team obtained data on incidence, mortality and five-year survival from the mid-1990s to the mid-2000s from cancer registries in 21 European countries, and used it to analyse trends.

Prof Coebergh, of Erasmus MC University Medical Centre, Rotterdam, The Netherlands, said: "Over the past 20 years, studies have produced a lot of comparative data on cancer, but often it has been one-dimensional and fragmented. We rarely see the often intertwined changes in cancer incidence, survival and mortality discussed in a systematic way for different tumours and in different countries. We have addressed it now and expect this approach to be followed. For the sake of prevention and organisation of treatment, it is vital to correctly interpret trends in cancer rates: has real progress been made or are we looking at artefacts? Observed increases in cancer incidence, f
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Contact: Emma Mason
wordmason@mac.com
44-077-112-96986
ECCO-the European CanCer Organisation
Source:Eurekalert

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