San Francisco, Marin County Breast Cancer Rates Exceed National Average, Study Shows
Women in San Francisco have a higher rate of breast cancer than women in Marin County, according to a study released Wednesday by the Northern California Cancer Center, the San Francisco Chronicle reports. According to analysis of new data from the 2000 census, San Francisco had 178.9 cases of breast cancer per 100,000 women between 1997 and 2001. Marin County reported 176.6 cases per 100,000 women in the same period. Breast cancer rates in Marin and San Francisco counties are "significantly higher" than the national average of 147 cases per 100,000 residents and exceed rates in seven other Bay Area counties, the Chronicle reports.
The study found that breast cancer rates among white, non-Hispanic women in Marin and San Francisco counties increased by 12.4% since 1988-1989. During the same period, rates for other Bay Area counties has increased by 5.9% and by 6.5% for the state overall. However, the number of deaths from breast cancer in the Bay Area decreased between 1988 and 2001, and the number of breast cancer cases also declined between 1999 and 2001.
In addition, the study found that Hispanic women in Marin County had the highest rate of breast cancer of any minority group in the Bay Area, with 139.1 cases per 100,000 people between 1988 and 2001.
Jeanne Rizzo, executive director of the Breast Cancer Fund in San Francisco, said, "Our position on this is the same as it was one year ago, five years ago and 12 years ago. This is an epidemic" (Fimrite, San Francisco Chronicle, 9/16).
The study is available online. Note: You must have Adobe Acrobat Reader to view the report.