(HealthDay News) — For young women, the rate of lung cancer mortality is stable or declining in most populations across the world, while for older women the rate is increasing, according to a study published online May 16 in Cancer Epidemiology, Biomarkers & Prevention.

Lindsey A. Torre, MSPH, from the American Cancer Society Intramural Research in Atlanta, and colleagues describe lung cancer mortality rates and trends for women globally. Data were collected from the World Health Organization’s Cancer Mortality Database for 65 populations on six continents. This information was used to assess age-standardized lung cancer death rates during 2006–2010 and annual percent change in rates.

The researchers found that for young women, during 2006–2010, lung cancer mortality rates (per 100,000) ranged from 0.7 in Costa Rica to 14.8 in Hungary. Among young women, in 47 of 52 populations examined, rates were stable or declining. Among women aged 50–74 years there was variation in rates, from 8.8 in Georgia and Egypt to 120.0 in Scotland. For older women, increasing rates were noted for 36 of 64 populations studied, including most countries in Southern, Eastern, and Western Europe and in South America. Rates were highest in parts of Europe and North America and were lowest in Africa, Asia, and Latin America for both age groups.

“More concentrated efforts to initiate or expand tobacco control programs in these countries globally will be required to attenuate the future lung cancer burden,” the authors write.

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