Tuesday, July 24, 2007

1/27/2007: Cancer Survivor Numbers Are Astounding!

What if you knew that virtually every resident of the metropolitan area of Los Angeles was a cancer survivor?Not possible? Think again.

According to this chart of 2003 cancer survivor data for the U.S., the number of survivors four years ago had surpassed 10.2 million, a phenomenal 25 percent increase from a decade ago.If you apply the growth rate of survivorship from the last decade to the current, then more than 12 million cancer survivors live in the U.S. in the year 2007.And, yes, that is roughly the same population for the Greater Los Angeles metropolitan area.

Then, when you look at this data further, you find that not only are many more survivors around, but the longevity for survivors is increasing as well. This chart shows that more than 8 percent (over 1 million) of survivors are living more than 25 years since their diagnosis. Looking at this data again, the statistics reveal that 30 percent of all cancer survivors have exceeded 10 years since their diagnosis.

The most unfortunate aspect of this data is the wide disparity of survival rates for men from cancer beyond year 15, where it is shown that longevity for women is about twice that of men beyond the 15th year. But then, the average longevity rate for women in the general, healthy population also exceeds that for men.

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