US cancer deaths are decreasing, study finds

More people are surviving the most common forms of cancer as cancer deaths continue to trend downward for both men and women in the U.S., according to a new study published today by the Journal of the National Cancer Institute.

From 2010 to 2014, overall cancer deaths in men decreased by 1.8 percent per year, 1.4 percent per year for women and 1.6 percent per year for children. Researchers from multiple institutions, including the American Cancer Society and the National Cancer Institute, examined data from population-based cancer registry programs and compiled by North American Association of Central Cancer Registries (NAACCR) to look at cancer deaths and survival rates after cancer diagnosis during different time periods from 1975 to 2014.

“Overall cancer death rates continue to decrease in the United States, reflecting improvements in prevention, early detection, and treatment,” the authors wrote.


They found improvements in survival across a range of the most common cancers between 2010 and 2014. In men, these improvements included a decrease in lung cancer deaths by 3.5 percent per year, a decrease in prostate cancer deaths by 3.4 percent per year and a decrease in colorectal cancer deaths by 2.5 percent pear year.


In women, death rates decreased for 13 of the 18 most common cancers from 2010 to 2014. This included a decrease in breast cancer deaths by 1.6 percent per year, in lung cancer deaths by 2.0 percent per year and colorectal cancer deaths by 2.8 percent per year.


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