FIGURE 2-1 Estimated number of cancer survivors in the United States from 1971 to 2002.
DATA SOURCES: U.S. prevalence counts were estimated by applying U.S. population counts to SEER 9 Limited Duration Prevalence proportions and historical Connecticut Limited Duration Prevalence proportions and adjusted to represent complete prevalence (2004 submission). Complete prevalence is estimated using the completeness index method (Capocaccia and De Angelis, 1997; Merrill et al., 2000). Populations from January 2002 were based on the average of the July 2001 and July 2002 population estimates from the U.S. Census Bureau.
SOURCE: NCI (2005c).
ever received a diagnosis of cancer (NCI, 2005c). This represents a tripling of the number of survivors since 1971 (Figure 2-1). Much of this increase can be traced to the advent of widespread screening for breast, cervical, and prostate cancers, which identified many more cases of early disease. Advances in treatment also account for a portion of the increase, albeit to a lesser extent (Welch et al., 2000a,b).
Only since the mid-1970s have half of individuals diagnosed with cancer been expected to be alive 5 years following their diagnosis (Rowland et