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Cancer survival rates improving
11:17am Wednesday 30th April 2014 in News
Half of people in Sussex diagnosed with cancer are now expected to continue living with the disease for at least ten years.
Cancer Research UK says survival rates for many cancers have improved significantly since the 1970s.
Around 8,700 patients in Sussex are told they have cancer each year, the charity said.
Women with breast cancer now have a 78% chance of surviving compared to only 40% 40 years ago, while ten-year survival for men with testicular cancer has jumped from 69% to 98%.
However just 1% of pancreatic cancer patients and 5% of lung cancer patients diagnosed today are expected to live ten years.
The charity has now launched a new campaign to try to ensure that three-quarters of all cancer patients diagnosed in 20 years’ time go on to live for at least ten years.
Lorraine Duffy’s father Michael Davy, 82, died just 24 hours after being diagnosed with pancreatic cancer in January.
Mrs Duffy, 51, from Polegate, said: “As a family we can’t quite take it in. We’re all still reeling from the shock.
“Dad had only been taken ill just before Christmas and not for a minute did we think it would be cancer.
“The first time we heard the word tumour was the day before his death.
“It all happened so suddenly that we only discovered the type of cancer he had – pancreatic – when it was written on his death certificate.”
Now Mrs Duffy and five other members of her family have signed up to take part in Cancer Research UK’s Race for Life at Eastbourne in June.
A charity spokeswoman said: “Every year, tens of thousands more people are surviving cancer a decade after diagnosis, showing that we’re gradually reversing the tide on this devastating disease.
“This is thanks to the work of our scientists and doctors, but none of it would be possible without the generosity of the public, whose donations we rely on to fund all our research.
“We believe no one should be diagnosed too late for their life to be saved, and effective treatments should be available to every patient, no matter what type of cancer they have.”
For more information on Race for Life visit www.raceforlife.org or call 0845 600 6050.
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