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Better public awareness and screening procedures, may have led to a decrease in certain type of cancer. While that is great news, there are four types of cancer, which appear to be on the rise.
The Increase In Thyroid Cancer
The thyroid is a gland in the neck, which produces hormones that a play a role in proper functioning of important functions, such as metabolism. Thyroid cancer occurs when cells in the gland grow out of control. Thyroid cancer is the ninth most commonly diagnosed cancer in the United States, but it is increasing.
It has increased in people of both genders and all races.
Better detection methods may account for some of the increase in diagnoses, but not all. Additional reasons for the increase in the rates of thyroid cancer are currently being researched. The good news is, although rates are increasing; the overall mortality rate is considered low.
There are not a lot of identified risk factors for thyroid cancer, but radiation exposure and certain genetic conditions may increase the chances of developing the disease. Symptoms of thyroid cancer include a swelling or lump in the neck, trouble swallowing, voice changes and pain in the neck.
There is not a routine screening for thyroid cancer. If patients have symptoms, such as a lump in the neck, further screening including an ultrasound is often done. A needle biopsy may also be performed if thyroid cancer is suspected. It is important to understand, there are other common thyroid conditions, which are not cancerous.
Skin Cancer Rates Climbing
The link between sun exposure and skin cancer has been widely publicized, yet the rates of skin cancer have continued to climb. There are a few different types of skin cancer including basal cell and melanoma.
The most common type of skin cancer is basal cell skin cancer, which is often treatable, but it can still be disfiguring.
In fact, skin cancer is so common, more people are diagnosed with skin cancer than lung, breast and colon cancer combined.
Melanoma is the most serious type of skin cancer and is also increasing. The Skin Cancer Foundation Reports between 2000 and 2009 the rates of melanoma increased by almost two percent annually. Melanoma is one of the seven most common cancers is the Unites States and the only one which is on the rise.
Since about 90 percent of skin cancer is attributed to sun exposure, increased rates must indicate more people are spending time in the sun unprotected. According to the American Academy of Dermatology, signs of skin cancer include changes to the skin, such as a red patch that won’t heal, sores that bleed and changes in moles.
Screening for skin cancer is relatively easy and involves a visual inspection of the skin by a dermatologist. If a suspicious growth is found, it will likely be removed in order to be biopsied.