June is National Cancer Survivor MonthJune is National Cancer Survivor Month

  1. Five-year survival rates for some cancers are now 90 percent or better.
    1. True
    2. False
Thanks to progress in cancer research, the likelihood of dying from cancer, in the United States, has dropped steadily since the 1990s. Five-year survival rates for some cancers, such as breast, prostate, and thyroid cancers, are now 90 percent or better.

In 2019 survival rates for all cancers combined are:
  • 67% of survivors have survived 5 or more years after diagnosis
  • 45% of survivors have survived 10 or more years after diagnosis
  • 18% of survivors have survived 20 or more years after diagnosis
Over the next decade, the number of people who have lived 5 or more years after their cancer diagnosis is projected to increase by approximately 33%, to 15.1 million.

Learn more about how research is driving progress against cancer, in the AACR Cancer Progress Report 2018.
  1. Progress in cancer research and care have eliminated disparities in cancer survivorship.
    1. True
    2. False
Advances against cancer have not benefitted everyone equally and certain segments of the population shoulder a disproportionate burden of the disease.

Examples of U.S. cancer health disparities in survivorship include:
  • Non-Hispanic black women have a breast cancer death rate that is 39 percent higher than that for non-Hispanic white women.
  • Men living in Appalachia have a lung cancer incidence rate that is 26 percent higher than that for men living in the remainder of the United States.
  • Patients of low socioeconomic status with anal cancer are more than 20 percent more likely to die from the disease than those of high socioeconomic status.
  • Adolescents and young adults (ages 15-99) with head and neck cancer who have no insurance are 51 percent more likely to die from their disease than those who have private insurance.
  • Women living with a same-sex relationship partner are three times more likely to die from breast cancer than women living with a male spouse or cohabiting relationship partner.
We need more advocates! Apply now for the Scientist <-> Survivor Program at the 12th AACR Conference on The Science of Cancer Health Disparities in Racial/Ethnic Minorities and the Medically Underserved, on September 20-23, 2019, in San Francisco, CA to learn more on how you can reduce cancer health disparities in your community.
  1. The childhood cancer community has a powerful voice in Washington, D.C. Legislation passed in 2018 promises to improve the lives of pediatric cancer patients and survivors.
    1. True
    2. False
Led by the childhood cancer community, Congress worked in a bipartisan fashion to pass the Childhood Cancer Survivorship, Treatment, Access, and Research (STAR) Act in 2018.

The provisions of the STAR Act do the following:
  • authorize grants for pediatric cancer survivorship research and guide the Secretary of Health and Human Services to facilitate the identification of best practices for childhood and adolescent cancer survivorship;
  • authorize the NCI to expand existing efforts to collect biospecimens for childhood cancer patients enrolled in NCI-sponsored clinical trials and to collect and maintain relevant clinical, biological, and demographic information on all children, adolescents, and young adults with cancer;
  • authorize grants to state cancer registries to identify and track incidences of child, adolescent, and young adult cancers;
  • require that the National Cancer Advisory Board include at least one pediatric oncologist to ensure pediatric cancer research concerns are represented in recommendations to the NCI.
Watch a video about pediatric cancer survivor Tori Lee, featured in the AACR Cancer Progress Report 2018, and learn more about how science policy is driving progress against cancer.
  1. Cancer survivors might be at risk for long-term health conditions, or late effects, from their treatment.
    1. True
    2. False
Research-fueled advances are increasing survival rates, but even newer, less toxic treatments can increase the risk of serious long-term health conditions.

Late effects can include:
  • Increased risk of second cancers
  • Impaired fertility
  • Heart or lung problems
  • Hearing or vision problems
  • Lymphedema
  • Hormone deficiencies
Cancer survivors are driving progress in survivorship research. Learn more about the science of survivorship at the AACR Annual Meeting 2019.
You answered out of 4 correctly!

Thank you for participating in our National Cancer Survivor Month quiz highlighting just some of the advances in cancer research that are benefiting patients today.

Cancer Research Saves Lives!

Throughout June we encourage you to share your experiences with cancer and cancer research on social media using the hashtags #CelebrateSurvivorship and #SurvivorsAdvocate. Learn more about the American Association for Cancer Research (AACR) – the first and largest cancer research organization in the world – and how you can help defeat cancer here.

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