U.S. Cancer Deaths Down 22 Percent Since 1991

Reuters health

- More than 1.5 million Americans avoided death from cancer since 1991 thanks to falling smoking rates and better cancer prevention, detection and treatments, according to a study from the American Cancer Society.

The overall rate of deaths from cancer decreased from about 215 per 100,000 people in 1991 to about 169 per 100,000 people in 2011, researchers found.

“Further reductions in cancer death rates can be accelerated by applying existing cancer control knowledge across all segments of the population, with an emphasis on those in the lowest socioeconomic bracket and other disadvantaged populations,” write Rebecca Siegel and her colleagues in CA: A Cancer Journal for Clinicians.

For the new report, the researchers compiled data from the National Cancer Institute, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the National Center for Health Statistics.

During the most recent years with data available, 2007 through 2011, cancer cases decreased by 1.8 percent among men and remained steady among women, they found