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Cancer Rates Falls In Younger Men But Stable In Young Women

A new national report on cancer from Canada states that young women between the ages of 20 and 44 are much more likely to die of cancer than young men. //

The national report was conducted by the Cancer Care Ontario and the Public Health Agency of Canada on people aged 20 to 44, which was previously an understudied group. It was explained that the study looked into the trends from 1983 to 1999 based on cancer registries, with projections to 2005.

Dr. Loraine Marrett, director of the surveillance unit at Cancer Care Ontario, said, “Incidence of a number of more common cancers is increasing, for example, thyroid cancer incidence is increasing in both men and women more rapidly than any other cancer, yet we don't have a clear understanding of why this is happening.”

Even as Marrett was of the opinion that there is not enough evidence of an environmental link for thyroid cancer, Meg Sears, a biochemical engineer and science analyst in Ottawa disagrees. Sears said, “Old people may get cancers because their cells have reproduced so many times they've got genetic changes and then things go wrong. But when young people get cancer it's either because of an infection or because of something else that's toxic in the environment.”

It was explained that there could be a probability of a part of the rise being attributed to better diagnosis of thyroid cancer, but that alone cannot explain the higher incidence of the malignancy, which is highly curable if detected early. The cause of thyroid cancer is attributed to the exposure to radiation, especially during childhood.

The report suggested that the general rates of incidence of cancer for men have reduced considerably since 1992, which in turn shows a drop in more common cancers for the age group such as melanoma, lung and colorectal cancer. The report has also shown though that testicular cancer that is the most common cancer in men has increased by 2.2% per year.
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