how many people have cancer in the united states? The facts.
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How many people have cancer in the United States?

According to estimates prepared by the National Cancer Institute, as of early 2004, there were 10,800,000 people in America who either have cancer currently or have had it at some point in the past. That's how many people have cancer in the United States. It's a shockingly high number.

During 2008, it is estimated that over 1,437,000 new cases of cancer were diagnosed in the country. This number excludes noninvasive cancers except those affecting the urinary bladder. It also excludes all basal and squamous cell skin cancers. These skin cancers account for an additional 1 million cases of the disease.

On average about 1500 people die of cancer every day in the United States. That's about 565,650 deaths during 2008. To put it another way, one out of every four deaths in the US are from cancer. Only heart disease has a higher death rate.

Out of the 1,437,000 new cases of cancer diagnosed during 2008, about 745,000 affected men and 692,000 affected women. Of the 565,650 deaths from cancer in the same period, about 294,000 were men and the rest were women.

Cancers affecting the oral cavity and pharynx accounted for about 35,000 new cases in 2008. Digestive system cancers such as those affecting the colon, rectum, pancreas, stomach, esophagus, liver, etc accounted for 271,000 new cases and about 135,000 deaths.

Respiratory system cancers -- mainly lung cancer -- were present in 232,270 new cases and caused 166,280 deaths. Genital system cancers such as those affecting the vulva, penis, vagina, prostate, testicles, uterine cervix, etc were diagnosed in 274,000 new cases. These cancers accounted for 57,000 deaths.

Breast cancer is another major killer -- over 40,000 women succumbed to the disease during the year. More than 182,000 females were diagnosed with the condition in 2008.

Urinary system cancers killed 27,000 people during the year and were diagnosed in 125,000 new cases.

With the increasing toxicity in the environment -- in drinking water, food, etc -- cancer has been on the rise in recent decades. It is feared that the answer to "how many people have cancer in the United States" will prove to be an ever-increasing number unless drastic changes are brought about soon.

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