Every day in Canada 22 people are diagnosed with some form of cancer.
In Manitoba, 6,500 people will be diagnosed with cancer this year — that’s 400 more than just two years ago.
In a new report released Wednesday, the Canadian Cancer Society said it expects more than 191,300 Canadians will be diagnosed with cancer this year.
The annual report, 2014 Canadian Cancer Statistics, says more than half these cases – 52 per cent — will be lung, breast, colorectal and prostate cancer. In fact, lung cancer is the leading cause of cancer death in the country accounting for more than three times the other major types combined.
In Manitoba, the most common cancer diagnosis will be colorectal (930 cases), lung (880 cases), breast (850 cases) and prostate (730 cases), the report states.
The disease will take about seven Manitobans from their families every day of the year.
However, more and more people are surviving cancer and living better lives after their diagnosis, the Canadian Cancer Society (CCS) said.
The annual report shows the Manitoba mortality rate for all cancers continues a 15-year improvement mainly due to reductions in lung cancer deaths associated with smoking rates.
'Today’s report shows that cancer would have taken about 126,000 more Canadians from their families had we not taken action.' - Mark McDonald, Cancer Society Manitoba
Between 1988 and 2009 statistics show 126,043 cancer deaths were avoided because of research and cancer control interventions such as early screening, improved treatment and prevention measures.
Of the deaths avoided, 23,721 were women with breast cancer and 19,363 were people with lung cancer.
Ellen Dueck is a cancer survivor.
"I noticed a mole on my back that had gotten bigger over the course of a couple of months," said Dueck. "It got bigger and darker and my husband and I we were concerned."
The discolouration of Dueck’s mole, one of the telltale signs, turned out to be cancer and it spread to her lymphatic system.
Dueck blamed her carefree youth in the sun without sunscreen for her cancer.
“You're young and you're kind of careless and you just kind of live, and you just think you're bulletproof to a certain level.”
Cancer diagnoses on rise
Dueck’s cancer was caught early.
The number of Manitobans diagnosed with cancer is going up, but that isn't necessarily a bad thing.
More aggressive and accessible early detection programs like those promoted by the cancer society may be helping Manitoban’s catch the disease in its beginning stages.
“It might look like you have a high incidence rate but in fact you're finding cancers early and you're able to treat them better and that's good news,” said Erin Crawford with the cancer society's Manitoba division. “ It's certainly good news that when a cancer exists you're finding it early because then you can treat it better and your survival rates go way up.
The death rates for breast, colorectal and prostate cancer are dropping and the incident rates for colorectal cancer and lung cancer among men have been declining for quite some time. The statistics also show the lung cancer death rate among women is stabilizing.
Nationally, more Canadians are living with cancer than ever before. There are now 810,045 Canadians who have survived cancer more than 10 years. That is 2.4 per cent of the population.
The five‐year survival rate has also increased seven per cent from 56 per cent in 1994.
“This report is confirmation that our investments into research and prevention measures are saving lives and giving people even more hope,” said Mark McDonald, executive director of the cancer society’s Manitoba division.
“Today’s report shows that cancer would have taken about 126,000 more Canadians from their families had we not taken action.
"This is undeniable evidence of the lifesaving progress that we must dedicate ourselves to continuing."
- In order, most common cancers in Manitoba (new cases expected this year)
- In order, most common cancers in Manitoba for males:
- In order, most common cancers in Manitoba for females:
Body of uterus
- In order, most common cancers in Canada (new cases expected this year)