Cancer death rates have decreased in the past year

Haley Steenhoek, Reporter

Cancer death rates are dropping at the fastest pace on record. This is specifically with lung cancer. This is due to the advancements in treatments for this type of cancer specifically. Lung cancer responsible for a lot of deaths in the world so doctors took action. 

The mortality rate of cancer has been continually declining for 26 years now. The death rate from cancer has dropped 29% in the U.S., according to data from the American Cancer Society. The four main types of cancer are breast, prostate, lung and colon cancer. These are the leading cancer types and are also the types that are decreasing the most. 

The declines are an encouraging sign that the screening, prevention and treatments for cancer, including recent advances in using the immune system to target tumors, are working. The decline in lung cancer is really shocking doctors. This is one of the toughest cancers to treat. Smoking was, and continues to be, the leading cause of lung cancer and contributes to high death rates. This type of cancer causes more deaths than the other three leading types combined, according to Times magazine. 

Colon, breast, and prostate cancer death rates are decreasing but slower than lung cancer. Some of the slowing can be due to problems in ensuring access to screening and treatment especially for minority women and those with lower incomes. Most of these 3 types of cancer have to do with race. For example, the death rate from breast cancer is 40% higher in black women that among white women. No one knows exactly why this is the case but it mostly has to do with genes that are common in the race and access to medical care. Race is also common with colon cancer but it’s more common among non- hispanic black americans who have a 30% higher chance of getting this type of cancer than any other race. 

The new advancements in treatments over the last decade are making these leading types of cancer, especially lung cancer, treatable. These treatments have not completely cured cancer but are more effective and are going to continue to decrease the death rates from cancer over time.