ATLANTA -- The breast cancer mortality rate in the U.S. has been edging down by 2% a year since 1990 and the incidence of new cases has declined by 3.5% per year from 2001 to 2004, according to the American Cancer Society/
ATLANTA, Sept. 26 -- The breast cancer mortality rate in the U.S. has been edging down by 2% a year since 1990 and the incidence of new cases has declined by 3.5% per year from 2001 to 2004, revealed the American Cancer Society.
But according to Breast Cancer Facts & Figures, 2007-2008, the decline in mortality occurred mainly among white and Hispanic-Latina women, with deaths dropping by 2.4% from 1995 to 2004. During the same period, the mortality for African-American women declined by 1.6%.
The data in the breast cancer report were first reported last January (Cancer Deaths Inch Down for Second Year Cancer Deaths Inch Down for Second Year), but a spokesperson for the ACS said the latest analysis pinpointed the racial differences in survival.
The January data came from the ACS's annual cancer report card. The breast cancer data came from its breast cancer report, which is released every two years.
Plowing through the blizzard of cancer incidence and mortality data contained in ACS reports can be confusing. For example, in its 2005-2006 breast cancer report, the ACS estimated that in 2005, there would be 211,240 new cases of invasive breast cancer and it estimated that 40,410 women and 460 men would die that year from breast cancer.
In the 2007-2008 report, the ACS estimated that there will be 178,480 new cases of invasive breast cancer-a considerable decline from the 2005 estimate and a nice fit with the reported decrease in breast cancer. But the ACS also estimated that 40,460 women and 450 men would die from breast cancer this year, which would be 40 more deaths than the 2005 estimate.
The explanation, said the ACS spokesman, was that the estimate this year is based on a different data set than the earlier estimate, Because of that, he said, it is impossible to make a direct comparison.
"Taken together, this report highlights the remarkable gains we've made in the fight against breast cancer," said John R. Seffrin, Ph.D., chief executive officer of the ACS. "But it also puts into focus the challenge before us: to close the gap so all Americans can reap the benefits equally, and to ensure that no American woman faces an increased risk of dying from breast cancer because of her race or ethnicity or because of lack of access to quality care."