US Pharm. 2009;34(9):10. 

Women are living an average of 79.8 years, which is 5 years longer than the life expectancy for men. However, women are prone to a greater number of diseases during their lifetime. Women have a greater than 1 in 3 lifetime risk of developing cancer.

Incidence: It is estimated that, by the end of 2009, 123.8 per 100,000 women will be diagnosed with breast cancer. Additionally, 103,350 women will be diagnosed with lung or bronchial cancer; 71,380 will be diagnosed with colorectal cancer; 33,860 will be diagnosed with lymphoma; and 31,690 will be diagnosed with skin cancer. It is estimated, moreover, that 22,330 women will be diagnosed with renal cancer; 21,550 will be diagnosed with ovarian cancer; 21,420 will be diagnosed with pancreatic cancer; 19,160 will be diagnosed with leukemia; and 11,270 women will be diagnosed with cervical cancer. 

Survival: The 5-year relative survival rate (RSR) for skin cancer is 93.7% in white women and 91.1% in black women; that for breast cancer is 90% and 78% in white women and black women, respectively. In white women and black women, respectively, RSRs for lymphoma are 72.6% and 68.6%; cervical cancer, 72% and 61.4%; renal cancer, 69.1% and 67.4%; and colorectal cancer, 65.9% and 56.7%. Respective RSRs for leukemia are 53% in white women and 46% in black women; ovarian cancer, 45.8% in white women and 37.4% in black women; and lung or bronchial cancer, 18.3% in white women and 14.5% in black women. Finally, the RSR for pancreatic cancer is 5.5% in white women and 6.2% in black women. 

Lifetime Risk: The probability that a woman will develop breast cancer between her 50th and 70th birthdays is 5.57%; the probability of developing lung or bronchial cancer is 2.29%. Probabilities are 1.54% for colorectal cancer; 0.58% for ovarian cancer; 0.44% for renal cancer; 0.39% for pancreatic cancer; 0.29% for leukemia; and 0.26% for cervical cancer. 

Prevalence: On January 1, 2006, 2.53 million women currently living had a history of breast cancer; 567,158 women had a history of colorectal cancer; 248,166 women had a history of cervical cancer; and 176,007 women had a history of ovarian cancer. In addition, 193,474 women had a history of lung or bronchial cancer; 109,902 women had a history of renal cancer; 101,110 had a history of leukemia; and 16,201 women had a history of pancreatic cancer. 

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