CDC: Breast cancer death rate declining for women

CDC: Breast cancer death rate declining for women
© Getty Images

Fewer women are dying from breast cancer, according to a new study from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

The study in the CDC’s Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report Thursday found that breast cancer death rates among women decreased between 2010 and 2014. But the rate is declining faster among white women — down 1.9 percent compared to a 1.5 percent decrease among black women.


Among women under the age of 50, breast cancer death rates decreased at the same pace regardless of race. But in women over the age of 50, there was a significantly larger decrease among those who are white.

The report said the largest difference by race was observed among women aged 60–69 years: Breast cancer death rates decreased 2 percent per year among white women in that age bracket compared with 1 percent among black women.

“Our latest data suggest some improvement for black women when it comes to disparities,” Lisa Richardson, director of the CDC’s Division of Cancer Prevention and Control, said in a statement.

“First, the decline in deaths suggests that white and black women under 50 are benefitting equally from cancer treatments. Second, we’re hopeful the lack of difference in death rates between black and white women under 50 will start to be seen in older women.” 

CDC reminds women that they can reduce their risk of breast cancer by knowing if there's a family history of cancer, being physically active, eating a healthy diet, maintaining a healthy weight and getting recommended cancer screenings.

It’s recommended women 50 to 74 years old, who are at an average risk for breast cancer, get a mammogram every two years. Women 40 to 49 are advised to talk with their doctor about when and how often they should be screened.