A study released Wednesday from the journal CA by the American Cancer Society showed that the U.S. cancer death rate fell 32% between 1991 and 2019.
”In summary, progress has stagnated for breast and prostate cancers but strengthened for lung cancer, coinciding with changes in medical practice related to cancer screening and/or treatment,” the study’s abstract read.
”More targeted cancer control interventions and investment in improved early detection and treatment would facilitate reductions in cancer mortality.”
The ACS said in a press release that the decrease might be attributed to an increase in the number of people with lung cancer who live longer after diagnosis as treatment and early detection technology progress.
”In recent years, more people with lung cancer are being diagnosed when the cancer is at an early stage and living longer as a result,” the statement read.
”The rate of localized-stage disease diagnosis increased by 4.5% yearly from 2014 to 2018, while there were steep declines in advanced disease diagnoses,” the ACS added.
”The result was an overall increase in 3-year survival rates. In 2004, 21 out of 100 people diagnosed with lung cancer were living 3 years after their diagnosis. By 2018, that number had risen to 31 out of 100 people.”
The report also credits declining rates of smoking and newly available combination therapies.
According to the ACS, rates of liver cancer have also stabilized after cases had previously spiked only a few years ago.
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