American Cancer Society Report is Misleading; younger women getting more triple negative, estrogen positive & HER2+ breast cancers

Women of childbearing age, in many states around the U.S. today, face historically high invasive breast cancer levels. The American Cancer Society’s (ACS’) recent study, published Feb 22, in the American Association for Cancer Research, is incorrect when it says breast cancer rates are not changing for younger women.

In Massachusetts, younger women (under 50), saw a 45% increase in invasive breast cancer between 1995-2007; younger women in Colorado saw a 27% increase between 1990-2008, and younger women in Florida saw a 40% increase between 1984-2008.

The American Cancer Society’s February, 2011 report doesn’t count the actual number of women diagnosed in each state; instead, it uses an estimate, based on a formula, based on 9% of the U.S. population.

To know the real story, we need to count every woman who is affected, and we need to have those numbers published for all of us to see and understand.

Contact you state cancer board and ask them how many younger women developed invasive breast cancers last year, compared to the past five or ten years. Also ask them, how many of these younger women were diagnosed with triple negative, HER2+ and estrogen receptor positive breast cancers.

We need this specific information, not estimates. Keeping women in the dark when it comes to these critical numbers, makes it impossible to measure any positive changes, as women try easy and healthy ways to stop breast cancer before it starts.