How widespread is cancer these days? The disease, which claims millions of lives each year, is so common that more people are sick with cancer than getting married or having a baby.
A new analysis made by MacMillan Cancer Support showed that more people are being diagnosed with cancer than getting married or having a first baby. The group stated that in 2015, 361,216 cases of cancer were diagnosed in England compared to only 271,050 babies born to first-time mothers and 289,841 marriages reported in the same year. Getting cancer is almost as common as graduating from university (370,910), according to the health group. Researchers from MacMillan warned that these are troubling statistics, considering that in only the last decade, 1.2 million people developed the disease before the age of 65.
Chief Executive of the group, Lynda Thomas, told Telegraph.co.uk, “as more and more people are being diagnosed with cancer, it’s important that we are all better informed about what to expect if we do one day receive this shocking news. Cancer is almost always life-changing, but it isn’t always life-ending. Life with cancer is still life — you’re still a dad, a sister, a grandparent, a friend.”
The group also found that cancer is the most feared disease for many people. Based on a representative group of participants, one in 10 people in the U.K. are afraid of developing cancer. This is leaps and bounds away from their fear of being diagnosed with Alzheimer’s, suffering a stroke, developing depression, contracting a heart disease or even multiple sclerosis.
Perhaps this fear is not entirely unfounded, as current projections place half of the world’s population developing a form of cancer at one point in their lives.
Although we live in a relatively healthier society, the cancer rates have exploded worldwide. The scientific community has tried and failed to understand the disease in hopes of developing a cure. The disease remains incurable largely due to our changing lifestyle habits, diet, and living conditions.
Some experts believe that aggressive medical treatments are doing more harm than good, urging people to become more aware of “preventive habits and educate themselves on medical practices that could be harmful in the long run.”
Image courtesy of: Audrey Palomino