More people 'are surviving cancer'

X-ray showing lung cancer Lung cancer is one of the most common cancers in the UK.

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Fewer people are dying from cancer in the UK despite an increase in the numbers being diagnosed, according to figures from the Office for National Statistics.

Nearly 323,000 people are now diagnosed with cancer each year according to an analysis of data from 2008-10.

The figures show 156,200 people died in each of those years.

Scotland had the highest cancer mortality rates, which were around 15% higher than the UK average.

Data for 2001-03 showed there were 403 new cases of cancer for every 100,000 men and 343 per 100,000 women in the UK.

Those figures increased to 431 per 100,000 men and 375 per 100,000 women in the 2008-10 analysis.

At the same time the death rates fell from 229 to 204 per 100,000 men and 161 to 149 per 100,000 women.

The four most common cancers were breast, prostate, lung and colorectal.

Catherine Thomson, head of statistical information at Cancer Research UK, said: "While overall cancer incidence rates have continued to rise, deaths rates from cancer have fallen - by 11 per cent for men and by 7.5 per cent for women since the start of the century.

"So the good news is that as individuals our risk of dying from the disease has fallen. The reduction in people smoking has helped hugely for many cancers, and we're better at diagnosing some cancers earlier.

"We're also better at treating many cancers, with surgery, radiotherapy and chemotherapy, as well as developing more tailored personalised medicine."

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