Key Points

  • The Annual Report to the Nation provides long-term trends in cancer incidence rates (new cases) and mortality rates (deaths) in the United States.
  • Overall cancer incidence rates are leveling off among males and increasing slightly among females.
    • These trends reflect population changes in cancer risk factors, screening test use, diagnostic practices, and treatment advances.
  • This year's Special Section focused on progress toward select Healthy People 2020 objectives related to four common cancers (lung, colorectal, female breast, and prostate).
    • The Healthy People 2020 target death rate (161.4 deaths per 100,000 persons) for all cancers combined was met overall and in most sociodemographic groups.
    • During 2007-2017, cancer death rates decreased 15% overall, and the percent improvement target (-10%) was met in many sociodemographic groups.
  • Many of the Healthy People 2020 objectives for death rates, cancer screening, and major risk factors related to lung, colorectal, female breast, and prostate cancer were met.
  • For the first time, the Annual Report includes trends for the most common cancers among children (aged 0-14) and adolescents and young adults or AYAs (aged 15-39).
    • Overall cancer incidence rates increased an average of 0.9% per year among AYAs, and an average of 0.8% per year among children during 2012-2016. The most common types among children included leukemia, brain and other nervous system, and lymphoma, with increasing trends for each of these during 2001-2016.
    • Cancer death rates decreased an average of 1.0% per year among AYAs and an average of 1.4% per year among children during 2013-2017.

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