Cancer is the second leading cause of death
in the United States, making it one of modern medicine’s greatest challenges. The percentage of the U.S. population who has or ever had cancer
has increased over the past twelve years. This is especially true for older people. Furthermore, men have a higher chance of developing cancer
than women. In 2012, there were around 1.6 million new cases of cancer and some 580,000 deaths attributable to cancer in the United States.
Breast and the prostate are the most prevalent forms of cancer amongst women
respectively. From an ethnic point of view, African-American men are the group with the highest incidence rate of cancer in the United States. Kentucky and Delaware are the U.S. states where the rate of cancer is the highest
. Arizona and Utah on the other hand have the lowest number of new cancer cases
per 100,000 inhabitants.
While incidence rates are increasing, cancer death rates
have constantly fallen since 1990. Men have a higher risk of mortality from cancer than women. African-Americans are the ethnic group
with the highest number of cancer-related deaths per 100,000 inhabitants. Lung and bronchial cancer cause the highest number of cancer-related deaths. In 2012, approximately 73,000 women and 88,000 men died from this type of cancer. The chance of surviving
for a five-year period upon diagnosis has increased from 49 percent in the 1970s to 67 percent nowadays.
The cancer drug market is the top pharmaceutical therapeutic area both in the United States
, and worldwide. Expenditure on oncologic medicine in the U.S. was worth more than 23 billion U.S. dollars in 2011. The top cancer drug in the U.S.
was Roche’s Rituxan, generating three billion U.S. dollars of revenue in the same year. The United States is also a top global developer of new cancer drugs. In 2012, the number of cancer medicines in development was 981. Among them, the largest groups were aimed at treating lung, lymphoma, and breast cancer.
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