More than 6% of bowel cancer patients in Scotland died within 30 days of diagnosis

January 12, 2016

"Pancreatic cancer mortality is favourably influenced by the decline in smoking in men, but unfavourably influenced by the increased prevalence of obesity and diabetes," said Prof La Vecchia.

In their study the authors write: "A substantial decline in total cancer mortality rates has been observed since the late 1980s in men and since even earlier in women in the EU. Between 1990-94 and 2000-04 the rates declined by 9% in men??. and by 8% in women??.In men the decline has continued in 2007 and will likely carry on up to 2011, and the greatest drop is predicted in Germany. For women too, the declines persist, but the trend in Polish women is less favourable. Given that Poland has the highest total cancer mortality rates in both sexes, the lack of improvement is particularly worrying. In France the predicted decline is also modest, although the 2011 rate in French women remains the second lowest after Spain. This is due to the recent unfavourable trends in lung cancer among French and Spanish women."

Prof La Vecchia concluded: "Despite these favourable trends in cancer death rates in Europe the number of cancer deaths remains approximately stable, due to the ageing of the population. Further, there is a persisting gap in cancer mortality between central and eastern European countries compared to western Europe, and this is likely to persist for the foreseeable future."

The researchers plan to repeat the study to predict cancer deaths for 2012. They believe that such predictions can help countries to plan their allocation of resources and strategies for preventing, treating and managing cancer.

Source: Annals of Oncology