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U.S. Cancer Death Rates Continue to Fall: Report
Date:1/8/2013

By Steven Reinberg
HealthDay Reporter

MONDAY, Jan. 7 (HealthDay News) -- Deaths from cancer continue to drop for American men and women from most racial and ethnic groups, according to a new report, with significant declines seen for lung, colorectal, breast, prostate and other forms of cancer.

"This is good news in that there is continuation of the decline in the overall cancer death rate," said Edgar Simard, a senior epidemiologist in the surveillance research program at the American Cancer Society. "The progress we are making in the fight against cancer is largely driven by the most common cancers in America."

Simard noted that the drop in deaths from lung cancer was in great part the result of fewer people smoking and better treatment. For colorectal and breast cancers, the decline in deaths also resulted from improved screening and treatment.

Not all the news from the report was good. Among men, death rates from melanoma skin cancer are on the rise and uterine cancer death rates are up for women. Death rates for liver and pancreatic cancer are also increasing.

For these diseases, treatment needs to get better if deaths are going to be reduced, Simard said. "We would like to have more research and more public attention to these cancers," he said.

The annual report was produced by researchers from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the American Cancer Society, the U.S. National Cancer Institute and the North American Association of Central Cancer Registries.

"Our efforts in cancer prevention and control are working," said Jane Henley, an epidemiologist in the division of cancer prevention and control at the CDC.

Henley said cancer diagnosis and deaths could be further reduced if people would live up to their New Year's resolutions to quit smoking, lose weight, eat healthy, exercise and cut down on drinking.

The drop in cancer deaths began in the 1990s and cont
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