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Study shows a drop in cancer rates

A new American Cancer Society report indicates that there has been a significant decrease in the amount of cancer-related deaths over the past two decades in New Jersey and throughout the United States. According to researchers, early cancer detection and treatment as well as a decline in smoking has led to the lower rate.

Since 1991, the cancer death rate has dropped by 25 percent, which has in turn saved the lives of more than 2.1 million people. Throughout the past decade, there was approximately a 2 percent decrease every year. This improvement suggests that the efforts and implementation of advanced cancer treatments have been effective in lowering cancer-related deaths.

However, researchers also believe that the trend toward fewer PSA blood tests, which were once commonly used to diagnose prostate cancer, have helped lower the overall death rate. When the tests were administered at a high rate, some patients were misdiagnosed and treated needlessly. On the other hand, the administration of much-needed treatment and screenings have caused some cases of colorectal cancer to subside.

Reports also indicate that factors such as ethnicity and race play a role in cancer rates. African Americans experience the highest rates of cancer and children with cancer have also become a growing concern. The ACS indicates that there will continue to be an occurrence of breast, lung, colorectal and prostate cancers.

When cancer has been diagnosed and patients receive adequate treatment, lives can be saved. However, when misdiagnoses occur and patients are treated carelessly, lives can be lost. A lawyer can provide legal assistance to a victim of medical malpractice. A lawsuit may be filed on behalf of a patient to recover compensation for medical expenses accrued because of the error.

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