By Elizabeth Mendes
Most Americans born into the generations that came after the Baby Boom have gone their entire lives aware that smoking can cause lung cancer. But this fact has not always been well-known – and at one time it wasn’t known at all.
Actually, it wasn’t even until cigarettes were mass produced and popularized by manufacturers in the first part of the 20th century that there was cause for alarm. Prior to the 1900s, lung cancer was a rare disease. Turn-of-the-century changes though, gave way to an era of rapidly increasing lung cancer rates. New technology allowed cigarettes to be produced on a large scale, and advertising glamorized smoking. The military got in on it too – giving cigarettes out for free to soldiers during World Wars I and II.
Cigarette smoking increased rapidly through the 1950s, becoming much more widespread. Per capita cigarette consumption soared from 54 per year in 1900, to 4,345 per year in 1963. And, lung cancer went from rarity to more commonplace – by the early 1950s it became “the most common cancer diagnosed in American men,” writes American Cancer Society Chief Medical Officer Otis Brawley, M.D., in an article published November 2013 in CA: A Cancer Journal for Clinicians.
However, though tobacco usage and lung cancer rates increased in tandem, few experts suspected a connection, according to Brawley and his co-authors.
From American Cancer Society
Each year, about 33,000 new cases of cancer are found in parts of the body where human papillomavirus (HPV) is often found. HPV causes about 26,800 of these cancers.
Number of HPV-Associated Cancer Cases per Year
An HPV-associated cancer is a cancer that is diagnosed in a part of the body where HPV is often found. These parts of the body include the cervix, anus, penis, vagina, vulva, and oropharynx (back of the throat, including the base of the tongue and tonsils). Researchers use cancer registry data to estimate the number of HPV-associated cancers in the United States by looking at cancer in parts of the body and cancer cell types that are more likely to be caused by HPV. Cancer registries do not routinely collect data on whether HPV is in the cancer tissue. CDC studies1 2 have reported the number of HPV-associated cancer cases per year, and these studies have more information on how HPV-associated numbers were calculated.
Number of HPV-Attributable Cancer Cases per Year
An HPV-attributable cancer is a cancer that is probably caused by HPV. HPV causes nearly all cervical cancers and many cancers of the anus, penis, vagina, vulva, and oropharynx. CDC studies3 4 5 used population-based data from cancer tissue to estimate the percentage of these cancers that are probably caused by HPV.
Time To Screen Tool
(From Ontario Ministry of Health and Long Term Care)
(From American Cancer Society)
Note: Click on picture for original version with better resolution
An Unexpected Choir with a Powerful Message
The audience at the São Paolo’s Museum of Art was waiting to listen to the famous São Paulo University choir. Instead, a choir of 12 laryngectomy patients went on stage and performed All You Need is Love by the Beatles using esophageal voice, prosthesis and electronic larynx. Most of the singers lost their voice due to larynx cancer, as a result of smoking. At the end of the performance, they displayed the sign: LISTEN TO THIS CHOIR’S VOICE: DON’T SMOKE
Cancer mortality rates at five, 10, 15, and 20 years after diagnosis.
Rates of indoor tanning among female high school students lowest in states with multiple restrictions on youth access
Female high school students in states with indoor tanning laws, particularly those with parental permission laws and age restrictions, were less likely to engage in indoor tanning compared to students in states without any laws, according to a CDC study published online by the American Journal of Public Health.
Skin cancer is the most common form of cancer in the United States. Approximately 3.5 million cases of nonmelanoma skin cancers are treated annually, and over 60,000 melanomas are diagnosed annually. While most cancers have been on the decline since the 1990s, melanomas, which are the most fatal of skin cancers, have been on the rise, especially among young women. Increased exposure to ultraviolet radiation through indoor tanning may be partially responsible for the continued increase in melanoma.
Researchers, led by Dr. Gery Guy at CDC’s Division of Cancer Prevention and Control, analyzed results of the 2009 and 2011 National Youth Risk Behavior Surveys of U.S. high school students in grades 9-12, and examined the details of each state’s indoor tanning laws. Among high school students, 23.4 percent of females engaged in indoor tanning, and 6.5 percent of males engaged in indoor tanning.
Dr. Guy and his colleagues looked at state indoor tanning laws, and the relationship between teens’ tanning behaviors and state laws. System access laws included warning statements and signs, limited advertising about the benefits of tanning, mandatory protective eyewear, operator-required incident reports, and penalties for violations. Youth access laws included parental permission for minors and age restrictions.
The odds of female students engaging in indoor tanning in states with any indoor tanning laws were 30 percent less than those in states without any indoor tanning laws. The odds of female students in states with systems access, parental permission, and age restriction laws engaging in indoor tanning were 42 percent less than those in states without any laws. Laws were not associated with the prevalence of indoor tanning for male youth.
States with laws that included systems access, parental permission, and age restrictions had the lowest rates of indoor tanning among teen girls. This is the first study to look at the impact of such laws on indoor tanning rates.
“State indoor tanning laws, especially age restrictions, may be effective in reducing indoor tanning among our nation’s youth,” said Gery Guy, PhD, health economist and the study’s lead author. “We need to address the harms of indoor tanning, especially among children. Indoor tanning laws can be part of a comprehensive effort to prevent skin cancers and change social norms around tanned skin.”
The numbers of states implementing new laws, particularly age restrictions, have increased substantially in recent years. Currently, six states (California, Illinois, Nevada, Oregon, Texas, and Vermont), restrict indoor tanning among minors aged younger than 18 years. A number of states are either considering new youth access legislation or strengthening existing laws.
The World Health Organization recommends that no one under the age of 18 years use indoor tanning. The Food and Drug Administration has proposed reclassifying indoor tanning devices from low- to moderate-risk devices. The proposed order advises against the use of indoor tanning among minors aged younger than 18 years.
World Cancer Report 2014
This book from the International Agency for Research on Cancer, the specialized cancer agency of the World Health Organization, provides a unique global view of cancer, including cancer patterns, causes, and prevention. The World Cancer Report series is recognized as an authoritative source of global perspective and information on cancer. The first volume appeared in 2003 and the second in 2008. This third volume in the series encompasses both established knowledge and recent research achievement.
World Cancer Report provides a professional, multidisciplinary assessment of all aspects of the geographical distribution, biology, etiology, prevention, and control of cancer, predicated on research. The concise nature of the text and the high graphic content (hundreds of colour maps, diagrams, and photographs) make the publication accessible to a broad readership. World Cancer Report is designed to provide non-specialist health professionals and policy-makers with a balanced understanding of cancer control and to provide established cancer professionals with insights about recent development.
The book includes chapters in which distinguished scientists from around the world provide a broad overview of established knowledge and then emphasize research activity and progress. In addition, text boxes distributed throughout the book provide short, in-depth discussions of selected questions or topics. A new feature of this volume is the inclusion of Perspectives considering the future development of different aspects of cancer research, written by those whose record of outstanding achievement qualifies them as individuals having unique vision.
(From International Agency for Research on Cancer, World Health Organization)
As countries modernize around the world, they’re increasingly being hit with one of the curses of wealth: cancer.
There are about 14 million new cancer cases globally each year, the World Health Organization reported Monday. And the trend is only getting worse.
The global burden of cancer will grow by 70 percent over the next two decades, the WHO predicts, with an estimated 22 million new cases and 13 million deaths each year by 2032.
The majority of cases now occur in low- and middle-income countries, the agency found. Many of these nations’ health care systems are ill-equipped to deal with the flood of complicated conditions that go along with disease.
Cancer in the developing world is a “time bomb,” says Dr. Bernard Stewart, an epidemiologist at the University of New South Wales, in Sydney, Australia, who helped edit the WHO report. The problem, Stewart says, is that treatment availability for cancer hasn’t kept up with the rise in its prevalence.
The long-held idea that cancer is a disease that affects primarily rich countries is slowly being undermined.
You’re still more likely to get cancer if you live in a wealthy country than if you live in a developing one. But you’re more likely to die from the disease if you live in a poor country because cancer is often detected later in developing countries, and treatments are limited.
"The drug treatment path is simply not an option for the vast majority of low-income countries," Stewart says.
Top: Annual number of new cancer cases and deaths, worldwide, is expected to rise about 60 percent over the next two decades.
Middle: Breast cancer represents about a quarter of all cancers reported among women worldwide. But in parts of Africa and South America, cervical cancer is a bigger problem.
Bottom: Prostate cancer is the most common cancer for men in the West, while lung and liver cancers are the top problems in Asia.
Graph by Michaeleen Doucleff/NPR. Maps courtesy of the World Health Organization.