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U.S. Cancer Rate-Death Rate Combo Drops for 1st Time
Date:11/25/2008

c. 3 issue of the Journal of the National Cancer Institute.

The report found that from 1999 to 2005, the rate for all cancers among men and women dropped 0.8 percent a year. Among men the drop was 1.8 percent a year and for women it was 0.6 percent annually.

The decline included all racial and ethnic groups except for American Indians and Alaska Natives, whose rates remained stable. Cancer death rates were highest for blacks and lowest for Asian American/Pacific Islanders, according to the report.

For men, the rates of prostate cancer decreased by 4.4 percent a year from 2001 to 2005. But, rates of cancer of the liver, kidney, esophagus, as well as melanoma, non-Hodgkin lymphoma, and myeloma increased. Rates remained stable for bladder, pancreatic, and brain/nervous system cancers and leukemia.

Among women, rates of breast, colorectal, uterine, ovarian, cervical, and oral cancers dropped. But, there were increases in rates of cancers of the lung, thyroid, pancreas, brain/nervous system, bladder, and kidney, as well as for leukemia, non-Hodgkin lymphoma, and melanoma, the report said.

The report authors also found a difference in lung cancer and lung cancer death rates in different regions of the country. "Lung cancer rates, especially in women, are increasing in 13 states in the South and Midwest," Jemal said.

These states have more female smokers, low excise taxes, and local economies that are traditionally dependent on tobacco farming and production, he said.

Besides lung cancer, smoking also causes cancers of the mouth, pharynx, larynx, esophagus, stomach, bladder, pancreas, liver and kidney, as well as the uterus, cervix and myeloid leukemia, he said.

Dr. David L. Katz, director of the Yale University School of Medicine Prevention Research Center, agreed that progress has been made, but there is still much to do.

"For those of us who have long argued that cancer, l
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