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Breast Cancer Fast Facts

• An estimated 207,090 new cases of invasive breast cancer are expected to occur among women in the U.S. during 2010. 1, p. 9

• About 1,970 new cases of breast cancer are expected to be diagnosed in men in the U.S. in 2010. 1, p. 9

• In addition to invasive breast cancer, 54,010 new cases of in situ breast cancer are expected to occur among women in the U.S. during 2010. 1, p. 9

• Breast cancer is second only to lung cancer in cancer deaths among women in the U.S. 1, p. 9

• About 39,840 women in the U.S. are expected to die from breast cancer in 2010. 1, p. 9

• An estimated 390 men in the U.S. are expected to die from breast cancer in 2010. 1, p. 9

• According to the National Health Interview Survey, mammography rates in women 40 and older in the U.S. decreased from 70.1 percent in 2000 to 66.4 percent in 2005. 1, p.9

• Only 51.2 percent of women 40 and older in the U.S. reported having a mammogram in the last year. 3, p. 36

• Recent studies suggest that many women in the U.S. are getting their first mammogram later than recommended, not having mammograms at recommended intervals or not receiving appropriate and timely follow-up of positive screening results. This may lead to more advanced tumor size and stage at diagnosis. 3, p. 34

• There are about 2.5 million breast cancer survivors alive in the U.S. today. 2, p. 2

• One woman is diagnosed with breast cancer every three minutes, and one woman will die of breast cancer every 13 minutes in the U.S.

       One every three minutes is derived from the following equation:
       365 days/yr X 24 hr/day X 60 min/hr = 525,600 minutes in each year
       525,600 / 207,090 women diagnosed/yr = 2.538 = 3
       One woman every three minutes is diagnosed with breast cancer.

       One every thirteen minutes is derived from the following equation:
       365 days/yr X 24 hr/day X 60 min/hr = 525,600 minutes in each year
       525,600 / 39,840 women die/yr = 13.19 = 13
       One woman every 13 minutes dies from breast cancer

¹ Cancer Facts and Figure 2010, ACS
2 Breast Cancer Facts and Figures 2009-2010, ACS
3  Cancer Prevention and Early Detection Facts and Figures 2009, ACS
2010 U.S. Breast Cancer Fact Sheet

Incidence

• Except for skin cancers, breast cancer is the most frequently diagnosed
      cancer among women in the U.S.¹, p. 9

• Breast cancer accounts for 1 in 4 cancers diagnosed in U.S. women. 2 p. 1

• An estimated 207,090 new cases of invasive breast cancer are expected to occur among women in the U.S. during 2010. 1, p. 9

• An estimated 1,970 new cases of breast cancer are expected to be diagnosed in men in the U.S. in 2010. ¹, p. 9

• In addition to invasive breast cancer, 54,010 new cases of in situ breast cancer are expected to occur among women in the U.S. during 2010. ¹, p.9

• In the U.S., during 2002-2006,
 women aged 20-24 had the lowest incidence rate, 1.4 cases per 100,000 women
 women aged 75-79 had the highest incidence rate at 441.9 cases per 100,000
 Incidence rates decreases in women over the age of 80, this may be due to lower rates of screening, the detection of cancers by mammography before age 80 and/or incomplete detection. 2, p. 1

• During 2002-2006, the median age at the time of breast cancer diagnosis in the U.S. was 61 years old. 2, p.1 

• In the U.S., white women have a higher incidence of breast cancer than African American women starting at age 45, yet African American women have a higher incidence before age 45 and are more likely to die from breast cancer at every age. 2, p.1  

• In the U.S., female breast cancer incidence rates for all races combined show five distinct phases since 1975:

 Between 1975-1980, incidence was constant
 Between 1980-1987, incidence increased by 4.0 percent per year
 Between 1987-1994, incidence was constant
 Between 1994-1999, incidence rates increased by 1.6 percent per year
 Between 1999-2006, incidence rates decreased by 2.0 percent per year 2, p. 3

• The long-term increases in incidence may be due to changes in reproductive patterns, such as delayed childbirth, and having fewer children, as well as greater use of mammography screening and increased detection of breast cancers too small to feel.  The slight increase in overall incidence in the late 1990s may be due to increased mammography screening, rising rates of obesity and postmenopausal hormone use. Finally, the recent decrease in incidence may be due to decreased use of postmenopausal hormones and decreased mammography screening. 2, p. 3-4

• Since 1999, among women 50 and older, incidence rates in the U.S. have been declining (2.5 percent per year). Among women younger than 50, incidence rates have remained stable since 1986. 2, p. 4

• In the U.S., incidence rates for white women increased through 1987, stabilized from 1987-1994 and increased until 1999.  During 1999-2006, breast cancer incidence rates among white women declined at an average rate of 2.2.percent per year.  Incidence rates for African American women increased until 1992 and have since remained stable. 2, p. 4

• During 1997-2006, incidence rates decreased 0.8 percent per year among Asian Americans/Pacific Islanders and did not change significantly among Hispanics/Latinas or American Indian/Alaska Natives in the U.S. 2, p.4-5

• From 1988-2000, the incidence rate of smaller tumors (less than 2.0 cm) among women of all races combined increased by 2.0 percent per year in the U.S.  Since 2000, the incidence rate has declined by 3.3. percent per year and the incidence rate of larger tumors (greater than 5.0 cm) has increased since 1992 by 2.0 percent per year. 2, p.5

• African American women in the U.S. were less likely to be diagnosed with smaller tumors (less than 2.0 cm) and more likely to be diagnosed with larger tumors (2.1-5.0 and greater than 5.0 cm) than white women. 2, p.5

• In the U.S., among women of all races combined, incidence rates of localized breast cancer increased through the 1980s and 1990s, but began to decline  by 2.3 percent per year in 1999.  The incidence of regional stage breast cancer increased from 1994-2001 and has since decreased by about 2.8 percent per year.  Incidence of distant stage breast cancer has remained stable. 2, p.5

• African American women have higher rates of distant stage breast cancer than white women. Rates of distant stage breast cancer among African American women in the U.S. have increased by 0.5 percent per year since 1975. 2, p.5

• In the U.S., between 1975-2006, the incidence rate for men increased 0.9 percent per year. The reasons for this increase are unknown (not attributed to detection). 2, p. 8

• In the U.S., incidence rates for African American men are higher compared to white men. 2, p. 8

• One woman is diagnosed with breast cancer every three minutes, and one woman will die of breast cancer every 13 minutes in the U.S.

       One every three minutes is derived from the following equation:
       365 days/yr X 24 hr/day X 60 min/hr = 525,600 minutes in each year
       525,600 / 207,090 women diagnosed/yr = 2.538= 3
       One woman every three minutes is diagnosed with breast cancer.

       One every thirteen minutes is derived from the following equation:
       365 days/yr X 24 hr/day X 60 min/hr = 525,600 minutes in each year
       525,600 / 39,840 women die/yr = 13.19 = 13
       One woman every 13 minutes dies from breast cancer

Screening
• About 80-90 percent of breast cancers in women without symptoms in the U.S. will be detected by mammography. 1, p. 10

• According to the National Health Interview Survey, mammography rates in women 40 and older in the U.S. increased from 29 percent in 1987 to 70 percent in 2000. Since then, mammography utilization stabilized through 2003 and showed small declines through 2005 to 66.5. percent. 2, p. 17

• In the U.S., white women age 40 and older were more likely to report a mammogram in the past two years (68/1 percent) than any other racial or ethnic group. Screening rates were 66.6 percent for American Indian/Alaska native, 64.9 percent in African American, 59.6 percent in Hispanic and 54.2 percent in Asian women. 4, p. 36

• In the U.S., the lowest prevalence (33.2 percent) of mammography screening in the past two years occurred among women who do not have health insurance, followed by immigrant women who have lived in the U.S. for less than 10 years (50 percent). 4, p. 36

• Only 51.2 percent of women 40 and older in the U.S. reported having a mammogram in the last year. 4, p. 36

• Recent studies suggest that many women in the U.S. are getting their first mammogram later than recommended, not having mammograms at recommended intervals or not receiving appropriate and timely follow-up of positive screening results. This may lead to more advanced tumor size and stage at diagnosis. 4, p. 34

Mortality
• Breast cancer is second only to lung cancer in cancer deaths among women in the U.S.¹, p.9

• An estimated 39,840 women in the U.S. are expected to die from breast cancer in 2010. 1, p.9

• An estimated 390 men in the U.S. are expected to die from breast cancer in 2010. ¹, p. 9

• In the U.S., breast cancer death rates have steadily decreased since 1990.

o Between 1975-1990, the death rates for all races combined increased by 0.4 percent a year
o Between 1990-1995, the rate decreased by 1.8 percent per year
o Between 1995-1998, the rate decreased by 3.3 percent per year
o Between 1998-2006, the rate decreased by 1.9 percent per year 2, p. 8 

• From 1990-2006, death rates decreased by 3.2 percent per year among women younger than 50, and by 2.0 percent per year among women 50 and older in the U.S. 1, p. 9

• The decline in death rates in the U.S. may be due to improvements in treatment as well as early detection and in recent years decreased incidence. 1, p. 9

• From 1997-2006, female breast cancer death rates in the U.S. have declined by 1.9 percent per year in non-Hispanic whites and Hispanics/Latinas, 1.6 percent in African Americans, 0.6 percent per year in Asian Americans/Pacific Islanders and remained unchanged in American Indian/Alaska Natives. 2, p. 8

• African American women in the U.S. have a 38 percent higher death rate than white women. 2, p. 8

• In the U.S., death rates from male breast cancer have remained about the same since 1975. 2, p. 8

• Approximately 17 percent of breast cancer deaths occurred in women who were diagnosed in their 40s, and 22 percent occurred in women diagnosed in their 50s. 5


Survival
• There are about 2.5 million breast cancer survivors alive in the U.S.  According to the NCI, about 2.5 million women with a history of breast cancer were alive (either cancer free or undergoing treatment) in January 2006. 2, p. 2 
 
• The 5-year survival rate for female breast cancer survivors in the U.S. has improved from 63 percent in the early 1960s to 90 percent today. 1, p. 11

• The relative survival rates for women diagnosed with breast cancer in the U.S. are:

o 90 percent at 5 years after diagnosis
o 82 percent after 10 years
o 75 percent after 15 years 1, p. 11

• For all races, the five-year relative survival rate for women with localized breast cancer (cancer that has not spread to lymph nodes or other locations outside the breast) in the U.S. is 98 percent, 84 percent for regional disease and 23 percent for distant stage disease.¹, p. 11

• In the U.S., the 5-year survival rate is slightly lower among women with breast cancer before age 40 (83 percent) compared to women diagnosed at age 40 and older (90 percent). 2, p. 9

• African American women with breast cancer in the U.S. are less likely than white women to survive five years: 78 percent vs. 90 percent respectively. 2, p. 9

• A lack of health insurance and lower-income areas are associated with lower survival among breast cancer patients, as well as the presence of other illnesses, unequal access to care and disparities in treatment that may contribute to the differences in survival. 2, p. 9

• Aggressive tumor characteristics linked to poorer prognosis appear to be more common in African American women and may contribute to lower survival rates. 2, p. 9

Age
• Aside from being a woman, age is the most important risk factor.1 p. 9

• During 2002-2006, 95 percent of new cases and 97 percent of breast cancer deaths occurred in women 40 and older. 2 p. 1

• A woman’s chance of developing breast cancer increases with age. In the U.S., a woman has about a 12.1 percent, or 1 in 8, lifetime risk of developing breast cancer. 2, p. 11 


Risk Factors
• The most proven and significant risk factors for getting breast cancer are being female and getting older.1, p. 9

• Approximately five to ten percent of breast cancers in the U.S. are due to inherited mutations in the BRCA1 or BRCA2 breast cancer genes (less than 1 percent of the general population).1, p. 9

• In the U.S., women with BRCA1 mutations are estimated to have a 57 percent risk of developing breast cancer by age 70; for women with BRCA2 mutations the risk is 49 percent. 2, p. 11

• Women with a strong family history (about 2 percent of adult U.S. women) should be evaluated for genetic testing for BRCA mutations. 2, p. 12

•  A recent study found that women who gained 55 pounds or more after age 18 had almost a 50 percent greater risk of breast cancer compared to those who maintained their weight.  A gain of 22 pounds or more after menopause was linked to an 18 percent greater risk, whereas losing 22 pounds after menopause and maintaining the weight loss was associated with a 57 percent lower breast cancer risk. 2, p. 14

• A meta-analysis of more than 40 studies, suggests that having about 2 or more drinks per day may increase breast cancer risk by 21 percent. 2, p. 14

¹Cancer Facts and Figure 2010, ACS
2 Breast Cancer Facts and Figures 2009-2010, ACS
3 Cancer Facts and Figures 2009, ACS
4 Cancer Prevention and Early Detection Facts and Figures 2009, ACS
5 Statement from Otis W. Brawley, M.D., Chief Medical Officer, American Cancer Society, November 16, 2009