LONDON: Last year, an estimated two million women around the world developed breast cancer or cancer of the cervix (the neck of the womb); more than 600,000 died - the equivalent of six large passenger planes crashing every single day.
These are the results published by a team from the University of Washington in Seattle in the British journal, The Lancet,
ahead of the non-communicable diseases conference at the UN in New York.
The study is the first global analysis of trends in cervical and breast cancer incidence and mortality, using data from 187 countries. It shows that while breast cancer deaths are concentrated among older women in richer countries, 76 percent of cases of cervical cancer now occur in developing countries, where the incidence of the disease is still increasing. Almost half those cases are in women under 50.
The authors conclude: "Our findings show that in developing countries in the reproductive age groups, breast and cervical cancer are substantial problems of a similar importance to major global priorities such as maternal mortality."
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