According to information from the American Cancer Society, the cancer rate 2015 dropped 1.7 percent.
While that may not sound like a big number, first, it’s part of a long-term trend in which the mortality rate for cancer has dropped 26 percent over the past 25 years (which translates into 2.4 million fewer deaths).
And the biggest reasonf for the drop? According to this Washington Post article:
Cancer Statistics 2018, the organization’s annual look at incidence, mortality and survival, tracks the decades-long decline in mortality as driven largely by falling death rates among four malignancies — lung, breast, prostate and colorectal cancer. Ahmedin Jemal, the group’s vice president for surveillance and health services research, said the decreases largely reflect reduced smoking and advances in prevention, early detection and treatment.
Overall, the cancer death rate has dropped from 215.1 per 100,000 population in 1991 to 158.6 per 100,000 in 2015.
Otis W. Brawley, chief medical officer of the American Cancer Society, said in a statement that the report underscores the importance of continued efforts to discourage tobacco use. While the reduction in cigarette smoking has pushed down mortality rates, “tobacco remains by far the leading cause of cancer deaths today, responsible for nearly 3 in 10 cancer deaths.”
That number is a huge drop — 215.1 per 100,000 to 158.6 per 100,000. Roughly a 36 percent drop. Why? SMOKING has dropped.
The smoking rate in 1991 … about 25 percent. The smoking rate in 2015 … about 17 percent.
The news isn’t all good. Lung cancer remains by far the No. 1 cancer killer. For men in 2015, 83,000 of all cancer deaths were from lung cancer, out of 323,000 cancer deaths (about 26 percent).
Among women, 70,500 of all cancer deaths were from lung caner, out of 286,000 cancer deaths (about 24.5 percent).
The next highest cancers? For men, it’s prostate cancer at 29,000 and for women it’s breast cancer at 41,000. So lung cancer for men and women combined kill considerably more than twice as many people as prostate cancer and breast cancer combined.