OTTAWA, Apr 14, 2004 (United Press International via COMTEX) -- Cancer will likely surpass heart disease as the No. 1 killer of Canadians within six years, the Canadian Cancer Society said Wednesday.
The Society estimated that there will be 68,300 cancer-related deaths this year, a number that is expected to rise as the population grows and ages. The number of new cases is expected to increase by 60 percent over the next twenty years.
"Trends suggest that, by 2010, cancer will be the leading cause of death in Canada," said Dr. Barbara Whylie, chief executive officer of the Canadian Cancer Society. "This disease is taking a huge toll on Canadians personally. It's straining our health-care system."
"The use of tobacco products is the single most important cause of preventable, early cancer deaths," the Cancer Society's report says. "Among men, smoking is responsible for more than one-third of potential years of life lost due to all cancers. Among women, smoking is responsible for about one-fifth of potential years of life lost due to all cancers."
Copyright 2004 by United Press International.