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Breast Cancer Rates Jump Worldwide, Study Finds
Date:9/15/2011

By Steven Reinberg
HealthDay Reporter

WEDNESDAY, Sept. 14 (HealthDay News) -- The number of new cases of breast cancer has jumped dramatically worldwide, from about 640,000 in 1980 to more than 1.6 million in 2010, University of Washington researchers report.

Over the same period, the number of cases of cervical cancer has crept up much more slowly and deaths from that cancer have declined, although in 2010 it still killed 200,000 women around the world. In 2010, 51 percent of new cases of breast cancer and 76 percent of the 454,000 cases of cervical cancer were in developing countries, the researchers noted.

"The world used to think of breast cancer as a problem that only high-income countries had and cervical cancer as a problem mainly for developing countries," said coauthor Dr. Rafael Lozano, a professor of global health at the university's Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation.

"What we have found is that while countries such as the United States and United Kingdom have been able to greatly lower the risk of women dying from breast cancer, through better screening and treatment, countries with fewer resources are seeing their risks go up," he said.

The world rightly recognizes that no woman should die because of complications related to pregnancy and childbirth, Lozano said. "Now that we can clearly see the trends in breast and cervical cancer, they need to become a central part of the discussion when priorities are being set for women's health programs," he said.

The report was published in the Sept. 15 online edition of The Lancet.

For the study, Lozano and colleagues collected data from more than 300 cancer registries and cause-of-death offices in 187 countries.

During the 30 years covered by the study, breast cancer cases have increased in all parts of the world by 3.1 percent a year, the researchers found.

In addition, among women aged 15 to 49 there were
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