Cancer death rates in the US dropped by about 20% from 1991 to 2009. This is estimated to equal about 1.2 million lives that were saved. The increased survival rates are thought to be the result of improved detection and early treatment for lung, colon, prostate and breast cancers — the four main types of fatal cancers. France and Japan have the next-highest survival rates for these cancers. Overall statistics for cancer death rates worldwide tend to vary widely depending on the country and type of cancer, and they are often difficult to track in underdeveloped countries where people might not have regular access to healthcare.
More about cancer rates worldwide:
- Although overall cancer death rates are down in the US, deaths from cancers of the skin, pancreas, thyroid and liver have risen.
- Denmark has the highest overall cancer rate worldwide, with 326 people per 100,000 in the country being diagnosed with cancer in 2008.
- Lung cancer is the most common cancer worldwide and accounts for more than 12% of all new cancer diagnoses — about 1.6 million cases each year.