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Baltimore Sun

Colon cancer screenings helping prevent death

More screening means fewer people are dying of colorectal cancer, according to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Still, the CDC says in a new report that more people need to be screened to prevent more cases of colorectal cancer, the No. 2 killer in the United States.

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The findings:

+The rate of new cases fell to 45.4 per 100,000 in 2007 from 52.3 per 100,000 in 2003.

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+The death rate fell to 16.7 per 100,000 in 2007 from 19 per 100m000 in 2003.

+That's 66,000 fewer cancers and 32,000 fewer deaths.

+Direct medical cost of the cancer was $14 billion 2010 and lost productivity was $15.3 billion.

+Screening, recommended at age 50, has increased to 65 percent in 2010 from 52 percent in 2002, but one in three people aged 50 to 75 was not getting screened.

"Colon cancer can be prevented, and we are making progress in getting more people screened," said Dr. Thomas R. Frieden, CDC director, in a statement. "Those who receive these life-saving screening tests can lead longer, healthier and more productive lives. Saving our nation the health care costs associated with treating colon cancer is an additional benefit."
See the report at www.cdc.gov/vitalsigns.


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