Central Europe to See Rise in Cancer Deaths
NEW YORK (Reuters Health) - The number of deaths from cancers related to alcohol and tobacco use will rise dramatically in several central European countries over the next ten years, according to French researchers.
They note that in recent years, life expectancy among men has fallen in formerly socialist countries. This worrying trend is attributed to a steep rise in deaths due to heart disease and cancer in middle-aged men. ``In particular, recent increases in cancers related to smoking and alcohol consumption have been reported in (Central and Eastern Europe),'' according to the report.
And the worst is not over, according to the researchers' projections of cancer deaths for these nations. Dr. Paul Brennan and colleagues from the International Agency for Research on Cancer, Lyon, France, collected and analyzed data from Bulgaria, the Czech Republic, Slovakia, Hungary, Poland and Romania on cancer deaths from 1965 to 1994. The team looked specifically at cancers of the oral cavity, pharynx, larynx, esophagus, bladder, kidney and pancreas. The group then extrapolated to estimate the mortality rates for 1995-1999 and 2004-2009.
The team concludes that death rates for these cancers is ''increasing dramatically in several Central European countries.'' Of the countries included in the study, Hungary has the highest projected rates for most cancers, and ``particularly rapid increases are expected for cancers of the oral cavity and pharynx and of the larynx in Hungarian men,'' according to the report published in the July issue of the International Journal of Cancer.
``Our results,'' the team concludes, ``indicate that further increases may be expected on top of the already high cancer mortality levels in Central Europe. Policies to reduce alcohol consumption and prevent smoking in younger generations are necessary to reduce mortality as these (groups) age.''