While billions of dollars are spent each year on the fight against cancer, the American Cancer Society projects that the number of female deaths from cancer will reach 5.5 million by 2030. That represents nearly a 60 percent increase from the 3.5 million totals in 2012.
What factors are driving this alarming increase? According to the ACS, where you live can make a big difference.
The Importance of Early Detection
Early detection and treatment greatly improves the odds of surviving cancer, but residents of economically disadvantaged countries don’t have access to high-quality health care. The highest mortality rates are in underprivileged nations such as Zimbabwe, Kenya and Mongolia.
Breast cancer survival rates also follow this pattern. The five-year survival rate tops 85 percent in high-income countries such as Canada and Australia, but the number drops to 60 percent or less in low- and middle-income nations including South Africa and India.
Lifestyles Can Increase Risk of Cancer
In addition, lifestyles vary from country to country, which play a part in the incidence of cancer. For example, women in China develop lung cancer at a higher rate than breast cancer, which is the most commonly diagnosed form in the world. Approximately 50 percent of Chinese men smoke, making second-hand smoke a likely cause of their high lung cancer rate.
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