The death rate of European men with cancer will fall faster than in women this year, according to predictions based on data about cancer patterns.
Researchers, who have been doing the estimates for seven years, said death rates from all cancers should decline in 2017, compared with 2012, except for pancreatic cancer and lung cancer in women. They said the difference in lung cancer rate reflects the fact that many women smoke these days.
Another forecast was that colon cancer death rates in box sexes will fall this year.
The research team put the actual numbers of this year’s cancer deaths at 761,900 men and 611,600 women.
Italian, Swiss, and American researchers conducted the study, “European cancer mortality predictions for the year 2017, with focus on lung cancer,” which was published in the Annals of Oncology.
Professor Carlo La Vecchia, MD, of the University of Milan, led the study, which compared projected 2017 death rates with actual death rates in 2012. The team forecast that the number of men who die of cancer this year will be 8 percent lower than in 2012, or 132 per 100,000 people. The death rate for women will fall by 4 percent, to 84.5 per 100,000 people.
“Overall, fewer women than men will die from cancer, but the fact that the rate of decline is slower in women than in men essentially reflects the different trends in lung and other tobacco-related cancers between the two sexes,” La Vecchia said in a press release.
The study covered cancer death rates in all 28 European countries and in the six largest countries combined: France, Germany, Italy, Poland, Spain, and United Kingdom. The researchers looked at statistics for all cancers lumped together, and for cancers of particular interest, such as colorectal cancer.
Colorectal cancer death rates are falling in both sexes. The predicted death rates this year are 16.1 men in 100,000 people and 9.3 women.
“The fact that we have managed to avoid over four million deaths from cancer in the past thirty years shows the effectiveness of strategies to prevent cancer and to detect and treat it better when it arises. Apart from continuing to control tobacco use, policy-makers should build on these past achievements by measures such as optimizing colorectal cancer screening and the management of breast cancer, leukemia and other cancers amenable to treatment. This needs to be done across the whole of Europe as there is still too much variation in death rates between countries, particularly between eastern and Western Europe,” La Vecchia said.
“Despite the encouraging trend of decreasing death rates in Europe in both men and to a lesser extent, woman, a total of 761,900 men and 611,600 women are predicted to die from all cancers in 2017 in Europe. This still represents over 1.3 million deaths from cancer in Europe, thus reflecting the amplitude and brutality of this disease,” added Jean-Charles Soria, editor-in-chief of Annals of Oncology.