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JAMA. 1988 Mar 18;259(11):1690-4.

Progress and objectives in cancer control.

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Division of Cancer Control, Jonsson Comprehensive Cancer Center, UCLA 90024-3511.


This article reviews progress in cancer control and objectives for achieving further control. In particular, rather than relying on a single composite statistic such as the age-adjusted mortality rate, this review stresses trends in cancer mortality in the United States using a cohort analysis. That method reveals a decline in cancer mortality beginning with young children in the 1950s and proceeding up the age scale in subsequent decades to those persons who were approximately 50 years of age in the mid-1980s. From age 55 years upward, the continuing increase in cancer mortality is due to epidemic lung cancer. The principal cause of that disease and what must be done to control it are well understood. The objectives for cancer control by the year 2000 set by the National Cancer Institute and the feasibility of reducing cancer mortality by as much as 25% to 50% are also considered. Increased cancer prevention research is needed.

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