News from the FDA/CDC

Cancer mortality continues to decline while cancer incidence rises in women



Overall cancer death rates continue to fall in the United States, but incidence rates have leveled off among men and increased for women since 2012, according to the Annual Report to the Nation on the Status of Cancer.

Average annual change in cancer incidence and death rates

During 2013-2017, the overall age-standardized death rate for all cancers was 158.2 per 100,000 population, and the average decline over that period was 1.5% per year. The average annual change was greater for men (–1.8%) than women (–1.4%) for 2013-2017, but the death rate was higher for men (189.3 per 100,000 vs. 135.5 per 100,000) for those years, S. Jane Henley of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and associates reported in Cancer.

“The drops in mortality we’re seeing are real, sustained, and a strong indication of what we can do when we work to prevent and treat cancer,” William G. Cance, MD, chief medical and scientific officer of the America Cancer Society, said in a written statement accompanying the report.

Overall cancer incidence for the most recent 5-year period (2012-2016) was 447.9 per 100,000, with rates of 487.9 for men and 421.4 for women, the investigators said.

Incidence dropped by 0.6% per year overall, but that hides a major difference between men, who saw a decrease of 1.0% a year, and women, who experienced an annual increase of 0.2%.

Over those 5 years, cancer incidence also increased by 0.8% annually among children aged 0-14 years and by 0.9% in adolescents and young adults aged 15-39 years, Ms. Henley and associates said in the report, which is a collaborative effort between the CDC, the National Cancer Institute, the American Cancer Society, and the North American Association of Central Cancer Registries.

“[W]e must not be complacent. The cancer incidence data – especially the increase in cancer among women – is a clear reminder that there is more work ahead,” Norman E. Sharpless, MD, director of the National Cancer Institute, said in the accompanying statement.

SOURCE: Henley SJ et al. Cancer. 2020 Mar 12. doi: 10.1002/cncr.32802.

Next Article: