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American Cancer Society Releases New U.S. Cancer Estimates (dateline July 12, 2003)

According to the newly released Cancer Facts & Figures, 1,334,100 new cases of cancer will be diagnosed in the United States in 2003, and 556,500 Americans will die from cancer this year. The report is released each year by the American Cancer Society and provides U.S. national and state estimates of new cases and deaths for almost every type of cancer. A sister report called Cancer Prevention & Early Detection Facts & Figures 2003 contains information about national and state tobacco use, nutrition, physical activity, and the use of cancer screening tests. A special section on smoking cessation is also included.

The report cites an estimated 675,300 new cases of cancer among men and 658,800 cancer cases among women in 2003. Approximately 285,900 men will die from cancer in 2003 while 270,600 women will die from cancer. Breast cancer remains the most frequently diagnosed cancer among women, excluding non-melanoma skin cancers. An estimated 211,300 women will be diagnosed with invasive breast cancer in 2003. However, deaths from breast cancer continue to decline, with an estimated 40,200 deaths (39,800 women, 400 men) expected this year. The rate of breast cancer deaths declined by 1.4% between 1989 and 1995 and by 3.2% since 1995.

Prostate cancer remains the most frequently diagnosed cancer among men, with an estimated 220,900 new cases expected in 2003. Approximately 28,900 men are expected to die from prostate cancer this year, making it the second most deadly cancer in men, after lung cancer. The second most common cancer among both men and women is lung, followed by colon and rectum cancers.

Top cancer cases expected among women in 2003:*

  • Breast (211,300 new cases)
  • Lung and bronchus (80,100 new cases)
  • Colon and rectum (74,700)

Top cancer deaths expected among women in 2003:*

  • Lung (68,800 deaths)
  • Breast (39,800 deaths)
  • Colon and rectum (28,800 deaths)

* Source: ACS Cancer Facts & Figures, 2003

The American Cancer Society estimates that approximately 9,000 children under age 14 will be diagnosed with cancer in 2003, and 1,500 children will die from cancer this year. Although it is the leading cause of death in the United States among children under 14 years of age, childhood cancers remain rare in the United States. Deaths from cancer have decreased 47% in children since 1975.

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