Cancer Prevention Works Newsletter

Cancer Prevention Works

The monthly Cancer Prevention Works newsletter provides the latest information about activities and accomplishments in CDC’s Division of Cancer Prevention and Control.

Latest Issue

November 14, 2019

Change the Course of Lung Cancer

Lung cancer is the leading cause of cancer death in the United States. In fact, lung cancer is the second most diagnosed cancer in men and women. These facts serve as a strong reminder that lung cancer awareness and actions to lower your risk are important to help change the course of lung cancer in communities.

Smoking cigarettes causes about 9 out of 10 lung cancers. The most important action you can take to reduce your risk of lung cancer is to not start smoking or quit if you do smoke. Avoiding secondhand smoke can also lower your lung cancer risk.

Adults age 55 to 80 who are or were heavy smokers may be at high risk for lung cancer. Talk to your doctor to see if screening is right for you.

Radon, a natural gas found in soil and rocks that can build up inside houses and buildings, is the second leading cause of lung cancer. Getting your home tested and treated for radon can lower your risk. Finding lung cancer early and better treatments are helping more lung cancer survivors live longer.

CDC Shares the Impact of Cancer Registries at Briefing on Capitol Hill

CDC staff and partners at OVAC briefing

Mike Mizelle (CDC), Caroline Powers (ACSCAN), Vicki Bernard (CDC), Nan Stroup (NJ), Lori Swain (NCRA)

One Voice Against Cancer (OVAC) is a collaboration of national non-profit organizations representing millions of Americans, delivering a unified message about the importance of funding for cancer programs and research. On October 22, 2019, CDC was invited to attend an OVAC briefing held on Capitol Hill titled, “Cancer Research: Challenges, Progress and the Role of Cancer Registries.”

Dr. Vicki Bernard of CDC’s Cancer Surveillance Branch led an insightful presentation and discussion on the importance of capturing cancer incidence data to help manage cancer research and surveillance. She explained how CDC’s cancer registries help address the impact of cancer among different populations, target cancer care for patients, and increase screenings. Additionally, Dr. Bernard focused on how improvements in data completeness, timeliness, and quality could decrease the time it takes to report cancer data, help define research priorities, and identify potential clinical research candidates.

New Data Brief on Lung Cancer Rates in American Indian and Alaska Native People

A new U.S. Cancer Statistics data brief looks at the burden of lung cancer among American Indian and Alaska Native (AI/AN) populations. Lung cancer is the leading cause of cancer death among AI/AN men and women, the same as it is for the overall population in the United States. When it comes to lung cancer incidence rates (new cases) and the age at diagnosis, there are notable differences for AI/AN people. Lung cancer incidence rates were higher among AI/AN people in the Northern Plains, Alaska, Southern Plains and the Pacific Coast regions compared to non-Hispanic whites.

For AI/AN men and women, lung cancer tends to be diagnosed at a younger age with 23% of lung cancer cases diagnosed before age 60 compared to 16% among the non-Hispanic white population.

Nine Caring Ways to Support a Lung Cancer Survivor

Many times, it’s hard to find the words or know what to do to support someone with cancer. Our new blog post shares a variety of ways to support lung cancer survivors. Most of the ways to support a lung cancer survivor are not that different from how you would support other cancer survivors.

Some lung cancers are not related to smoking, so it’s important to understand that this stigma can be difficult for lung cancer survivors. For lung cancer survivors who did smoke, it may be helpful to understand that nicotine addiction is a persistent condition and long-term help to quit for good may be needed.

Colorectal Cancer Screening Increases in West Virginia

Cancer prevention and control can make a difference in communities, and West Virginia knows firsthand. The CDC-funded West Virginia Program to Increase Colorectal Cancer Screening worked with a local clinic to increase colorectal cancer screening uptake in the northern panhandle of the state.

Wheeling Health Right is a free clinic for low-income patients, and most of its patients were 50 years old or older, the recommended age for colorectal cancer screening. Only 9% of patients at Wheeling Health Right were getting screened. By listening to patients about which test they preferred and sending them reminders to make sure they completed screening, the clinic increased its colorectal cancer screening percentage from 9% to 53% in 2017, and then to more than 67% in 2018.

Research Spotlight

Lung cancer incidence in nonmetropolitan and metropolitan counties—United States, 2007–2016 examines the differences in lung cancer incidence rates among men and women in nonmetropolitan and metropolitan counties.

Smoking cessation behaviors among older U.S. adultsexternal icon looks at smoking cessation behaviors among older adults and how to help inform clinical and community efforts to increase cessation and help older adults successfully quit smoking.

Adoption and implementation of evidence-based colorectal cancer screening interventions among cancer control program grantees, 2009–2015 studies how CDC-funded awardees implement and maintain evidence-based interventions to promote colorectal cancer screening.

Previous Issue: Breast Cancer Special Edition

October 24, 2019

Getting the Right Treatment at the Right Time to Reduce Inequities in Breast Cancer Survival

In 2017, CDC published a wide-ranging series of articles on 5-year survival across several cancers. For breast cancer, the 5-year survival for all women was around 90%, but survival was more than 10% lower among black women compared to white women. A new blog post for Breast Cancer Awareness Month discusses how a coordinated team approach can improve these differences.

Breast Cancer Screening Among Women by Nativity, Birthplace, and Length of Time in the United States

The U.S. Preventive Services Task Force recommends mammography screening every two years for women of average risk aged 50 to 74 to reduce deaths from breast cancer. Data in a new National Health Statistics Report pdf icon[PDF-485KB] shows that foreign-born women were less likely than U.S.-born women to have ever had a mammogram (88.3% compared with 94.1%).

Recommendation for Women at Increased Risk of Breast Cancer

A final recommendation statementexternal icon and evidence summary on taking medication to reduce breast cancer risk is now available from the U.S. Preventive Services Task Force. The Task Force found that some women at increased risk of breast cancer can benefit from risk-reducing medications such as, tamoxifen, raloxifene, or aromatase inhibitors. However, women who are not at increased risk should not take these medications.

Thrive with Linda After Cancer!

A new “Talk to Someone” simulation gives cancer survivors useful tips for living well after cancer. Linda, a five-year cancer survivor, answers questions and gives advice to help fellow survivors start and maintain healthy habits.

Linda offers a conversational experience on four topics: anxiety and distress, alcohol use, tobacco use, and physical activity and nutrition. As a cancer survivor, Linda is a virtual friend and coach who provides guidance on healthy lifestyle choices. She is knowledgeable, empathetic, and relatable.

Staying healthy after cancer treatment can be challenging. Linda encourages survivors to take steps to live a longer, healthier life.

CDC’s Bring Your Brave Brings Breast Cancer Awareness to Broadway

Photo of Bring Your Brave billboard on Times Square.

CDC’s Bring Your Brave campaign raises awareness about breast cancer and salutes young breast cancer survivors and caregivers with a digital billboard in New York’s Times Square. The large display at 1500 Broadway and 43rd Street features a variety of images and the message, “Surviving breast cancer takes teamwork.” The billboard is available throughout October.

Bring Your Brave provides information about breast cancer to women younger than 45 by sharing real stories about young women whose lives have been affected by breast cancer. Learn about young women’s experiences with breast cancer.

Tomosynthesis (3D) vs. Digital Mammography (2D)

A mammogram can save your life by detecting breast cancer before any physical symptoms develop. When getting a mammogram, you may be asked to choose between two kinds of mammography: tomosynthesis (3D) or digital mammography (2D). While 3D mammography is newer, researchers do not know which type of mammography is better at detecting life-threatening breast cancers.

The NCI-funded Tomosynthesis Mammographic Imaging Screening Trial (TMIST) is a study to compare these two types of mammograms. TMIST is also studying the biology of breast cancer to help personalize breast cancer screening in the future. Researchers plan to enroll 165,000 women ages 45 to 74 years old. Women can join the trial by contacting one of the participating mammography sites around the United States, Canada, and Argentina. Learn more about the trial at the National Cancer Instituteexternal icon and ECOG-ACRIN cancer research group.external icon

Page last reviewed: November 14, 2019