Israel Breast Cancer Mortality Rate Drops by 27%

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Israel Breast Cancer Mortality Rate Drops by 27%

Written by Alexander J. Apfel/TPS on November 05, 2015

A report recently published by the Israeli Central Bureau of Statistics has revealed a series of facts concerning the trends in breast cancer in Israel since the turn of the 21st century.

The stats indicate that breast cancer is the most common form of the disease amongst Israeli women and was the cause of 5% of the total female mortality rate in 2013. Moreover, it accounts for 19.1% (one fifth) of the total female mortality rate from all forms of cancer in Israel.

In 2013, a total of 1,052 women died as a result of the illness, among them 906 Jewish women (86.1%) and 105 Arab women (10%).

However, future prospects of treating breast cancer in Israel look optimistic as the report also shows that between 1998 and 2013, the country has seen a drop of 27% in the mortality rate of women who suffer from the illness.

A spokesperson at the Israel Cancer Association (ICA) told Tazpit Press Services that the most important factors which accounts for the declining mortality rate is not merely advanced treatment but also innovative methods of early detection which allow for swift and preventative treatment.

According to the spokesperson, earlier detection has been significantly facilitated by way of two mobile mammography cars, which the ICA sends to as many Israeli and Arab cities and towns as possible across Israel.

Mammography is a low-energy X-ray screening system which is used in order to examine the breast and is often able to diagnose cancer prior to the malignant stage. Through the use of two mobile mammography systems, detection tests on women are now far more accessible to women that they once were.

“The vehicles arrive to remote villages where women have never used the mammography. The reason for this is that it is hard to get to the hospitals and institutions where the relevant tests can be carried out,” the ICA spokesperson told TPS.

“People don’t always have time or access. But the vehicles bring it to more people so that the early checks and detections can be made. This means the cancer can be spotted in the early stages so the cure is more likely.”

Dr. Shani Paluch-Shimon, an oncologist and head of the breast cancer treatment service for young women at Sheba Medical Center, Tel Hashomer near Tel Aviv also shared her comments with TPS on the statistics. Agreeing that early detection undoubtedly played an important role, she also praised Israel’s “outstanding” medical services which are available in Israel.

Such medical services include the introduction of taxane-based chemotherapy, better hormonal therapy by using a family of drugs called Aromatase Inhibitors and newer biological therapies with a drug called Herceptin.

“We have an excellent basket of health services that allow us to provide cutting edge care with three pivotal changes in oncology treatment that have taken place over the last fifteen-twenty years to reduce the mortality rate of breast cancer,” Dr. Paluch stated.

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