Most Common Forms of Cancer in Women

By: KBTX Staff Email
By: KBTX Staff Email

It's the most common type of cancer in American women with one in eight getting breast cancer at some point in their life.

Breast cancer is the most common form of cancer diagnosis in women and is second only to lung cancer in the number of deaths each year.

The statistics are startling, annually an estimated 200,000 women will be diagnosed with breast cancer and more than 40,000 will die.

But by making healthy lifestyle choices and exercising regularly, individuals can help reduce the risk of developing breast cancer.

"Breast cancer is one that's been around a long time, it's so common we know a lot about it. A lot of research dollars are poured into breast cancer every year, for sure more than other malignancies," said Oncologist Dr. Erin Fleener.

Through mammograms, regular self-exams, and clinical breast exams doctors are also able to better detect breast cancer before it's able to spread.

The second most common form of cancer diagnosis in women does not differentiate between the sexes.

"Lung cancer is becoming more common. It's becoming more common in women. It used to be we thought of as a disease that was a disease of men and we now know that it's becoming more common in women, both in smokers and non-smokers," Fleener said.

Last year, lung cancer accounted for 29% of all cancer deaths among women and overall, while there are still more men diagnosed with the disease, the gap is closing.

Colon cancer affects men and women with equal frequency, but there's a common misperception that it's a man's disease.

Even though colon cancer's become the third most common cause of cancer deaths in women claiming more than 25,000 American women this year, women typically don?t think they will get this disease.

"We recommend that everyone get a colonoscopy at the age of 50 because these are also cancers that if they're caught early, we do very well with," said Fleener. "They're very curable over 80% of the time, if we catch them early on."

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