American Cancer Society Study Finds 25 Percent Drop In Death Rates Since 1991

More Than 30,000 Cancer Cases Projected For Wisconsin In 2017
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A study by the American Cancer Society shows cancer death rates across the country dropped 25 percent over the past two decades. The study also estimates Wisconsin will see nearly 33,000 new cases of cancer this year.

The society’s spokesman for Wisconsin, Lou Harvin, said Wisconsinites must focus on preventative measures to continue the decrease in new cases.

"The state's smoking rates are getting better but it's still an issue and we're trying to improve that," Harvin said. "In Wisconsin, we're just trying to get the word out as much as we can to tell people that cancer is alive and well, even though the numbers are getting better."

The study predicts a little more than 3,000 Wisconsin deaths will be due to lung cancer in 2017.

Smoking rates tend to be higher among people of color and because of that they should start getting tested at an earlier age than their white peers, Harvin said.

Data from the study also estimated 21,000 of those new patients will survive. Harvin said survival estimates are a rather new figure.

"Fifty years ago, there was no such thing as the phrase 'cancer survivor,'" Harvin said. "That was an oxymoron. Today, we are able to say that people are living with cancer. That people are dealing with it, that they're combating it. They are fighting it, they're living longer with cancer."

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