Sunday, November 27, 2011

So where should you live?

It seems that it is important where you live in terms of rates of cancer and cancer survival rates. First I found a list of the top fifty towns and cities in Massachusetts with the highest rates of cancer - this data needs to be taken with a large grain of salt. The city with the highest rate of cancer is Nantucket - which is also home to lots of retirees and seniors. Cancer is more prevalent in older people so it would make sense where more old people live there would be more cancer.

Then I find an article on the UK talking about their great successes in increasing survival rates for some types of cancer but not others. One theory on why some blood cancers are have such high survival rates is that those patients are quick to be referred to a specialist. Now that's food for thought - if you have a cancer diagnosis, find an oncologist who specializes in your cancer.

Finally, as of 2007 cancer survival rates are increasing across Europe but still lag behind the US. And rates are worse in eastern Europe than in northern and western European countries. So location does matter. But also the best cancer survival rates are in Sweden, Norway, and Denmark. "The United Kingdom in particular comes out badly in the tables, showing cancer survival rates that are among the worst in Europe." I find this interesting in that it is sort of a rebuttal for the article above. I don't think this is a reflection on national health care because most of Europe has one form of it or another. Maybe its reflective of lifestyles.

But are their higher rates of other diseases in other places? Probably. This is only about cancer. We can all live in caves and stay out of the sun and eat raw food and never touch any chemicals...

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