Death rates for some of the most common types of cancers have dropped new analysis has revealed, with breast cancer falling by as much as 10.4 per cent.
The new data from Cancer Research UK has revealed that mortality rates for the four most common cancers has dropped by 4.9 per cent in five years – with bowel cancer deaths rates falling by 8 per cent; lung cancer decreasing by 6.7 per cent; and prostate (men) falling by 6.1 per cent.
Cancer Research UK has welcomed the results.
Sir Harpal Kumar, Cancer Research UK’s chief executive, said: “It’s fantastic to see research saving lives right now, with the rate of women dying from breast cancer dropping year on year.
“But while the rate of people dying from cancer overall is decreasing, the overall
number of people developing and dying from cancer in the UK and worldwide is expected to rise. This is because the population is growing and more of us are living longer.”
The analysis by Cancer Research UK comes ahead of tomorrow’s World Cancer Day.
Sir Kumar added; “This World Cancer Day it’s important to celebrate how much things have improved, but also to renew our commitment to saving the lives of more cancer patients.”
“More still needs to be done to bring down the number of women affected by breast cancer and to tackle the cancers that are harder to diagnose and treat. By donating and investing in more crucial research we can keep fighting this devastating disease.”
Better understanding of genetics
Cancer Research UK credits a research and a better understanding of the genetics of the disease, together with the development of new drugs (such as aromatase inhibitors) and surgical techniques, contributing to the falling death rate – as well as broader use of drugs such as tamoxifen.
Tracey Brader, 56, was diagnosed with breast cancer in 2015.
She is is now taking tamoxifen after going through a mastectomy and chemotherapy treatment.
Tracey said: ““The diagnosis was a total shock. The kids were 21, 19 and 14 at the time and I had to wait to tell them as my eldest was doing finals. When we finally had the conversation, they each responded in a different way. It was a challenge to manage their different emotions as well as my own.
“I like to feel like I’m in control and you are waiting for things – results and next steps, there are so many unknowns. I lost my hair, my eyelashes and my eyebrows and I didn’t feel like me anymore. It’s taken some time to build myself back up but I’m getting there.”
Currently two in four people who have cancer survive for at least 10 years.
Tracey added, “I am so grateful for the treatments available to me and without research things could have ended very differently. It’s been difficult but I’m so grateful to still be here with my family and that’s why we are supporting Cancer Research UK this World Cancer Day.”