While the odds of an individual developing cancer vary widely based on age, gender, family history, and personal habits, it is almost guaranteed that most of the world’s population knows someone who is currently fighting or has battled cancer. For some this means family or friends – victims or survivors. That’s why we’re taking advantage of February being National Cancer Prevention Month to share important stats, prevention tips, and CMT’s role in patient access to care through genetic testing.
Since 1991 the cancer death rate in the US has declined rapidly, mostly due to fewer people smoking and advances in early detection and treatment. The main types of cancer that account for 4 out of 10 cancer deaths in the US are lung, breast, prostate, and colorectal. Of these types, the American Cancer Society estimates that in 2021 there will be 235k, 280k, 250k, and 100k new cases, respectively. Other common types of cancer and an individual’s chances of developing it over a lifetime include:
Although the numbers may seem daunting, there are ways to mitigate the chances of developing cancer and even increase the survival rate. As of January 2019, there were an estimated 16.9 million cancer survivors in the US, and that number is projected to increase to 22.2 million by 2030. Here are a few ways to take action and reduce the risk of developing cancer for the individual:
How CMT Can Help
Because cancer is itself a genetic disease, analyzing a patient’s genetic makeup as a first step can greatly improve cancer prevention. According to the NIH, inherited genetic mutations play a role in 5-10% of all cancers, making testing for hereditary cancer syndromes increasingly valuable. CMT Solutions performs services to help patients get access to genetic testing, including BRCA1/2 (Breast Cancer) gene, EGFR (epidermal growth factor receptor), and BRAF (B-Raf proto-oncogene) testing. Patients with an inherited mutation in BRCA1/2 have an increased risk for breast, ovarian, melanoma, pancreatic, and prostate cancers. Here at CMT, we recognize that behind every prior authorization for a BRCA test we perform is a real patient, facing real challenges. Likewise, behind every case we submit there is a real person completing that submission, and together our employees work towards creating a world without cancer.