The cancer death rate in Canada is going down.
In its annual cancer statistics report released today, the Canadian Cancer Society says declines were seen in all four major cancers: lung, colorectal, breast and prostate.
Between 1988 and 2007, overall death rates dropped by 21 per cent in men and 9 per cent in women.
A smaller decline in the women’s death rate is due to the increase in lung cancer deaths among women over the same timeframe.
An increase thought to be due primarily to the fact that women’s smoking rates did not begin to decline until the 1980s, whereas in men, smoking rates began to decline in the 1960s.
Gillian Broomfield, Director of Cancer Control Policy, says about half of cancers can be prevented.
Among other factors, tobacco use, an unhealthy diet, and exposure to environmental and workplace carcinogens account for a substantial number of cancer diagnoses and deaths each year.