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Majority of People With Cancer Living 5 or More Years

New data released by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention indicates that an estimated two out of three people with invasive cancer are now living for five or more years. The overall survival rates, however, are showing that much work still needs to be done to win the war on this disease.

According to the CDC, the best survival rates for Americans diagnosed with cancer relate to the most common types of this disease. For example, an estimated 97 percent of prostate cancer patients are living five or more years after diagnosis. Other promising outcomes are found with:

Breast cancer – 88 percent survival rate at 5 years
• Colorectal cancer – 63 percent survival rate at 5 years

The news isn’t as good for another common type of cancer. Lung cancer patients still only have an 18 percent survival rate at the 5-year mark, the CDC reported.

The CDC has never published cancer survivor data in the past, but intends to do so annually going forward. The agency’s report also includes information about cancer incidence rates. The top for rates of incidence are related to these cancers:

• Prostate – 128 cases per 100,000 men
• Breast cancer – 122 cases per 100,000 women
• Lung and bronchus cancer – 61 cases per 100,000 people
• Colorectal cancer – 40 cases per 100,000 people

Combined the four types of cancer accounted for about half of the cases reported in 2011, the year the CDC reviewed.

So, what does this all mean?

The bottom line is the CDC’s numbers show there have been victories in the battle against cancer, but much work needs to be done to eradicate this killer. As researchers continue to search for a cure, people can do their part by reducing their own risks, attending routine screening appointments and taking steps to live a healthier life.

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