LOS ANGELES (CBSLA.com) — For the past 37 years, USC’s Keck School of Medicine has been analyzing every case of cancer in Los Angeles in an effort to better fight the disease.
“We’re on the front lines fighting cancer, and the more information we have, the better.” David Agus, professor of medicine and engineering at USC said. “When we know what’s going on, the better we’re going to treat it.”
The study looked at 1.3 million documented cases of cancer among 11 ethnic groups.
The most common cancers in men are prostate cancer and lung cancer, while breast and colon cancer are at the top for women.
Agus says the four most common cancers in men and women are preventable or can be delayed.
Lihua Liu, assistant professor of clinical preventive medicine, agrees that the the majority of cancer in Los Angeles is preventable and the risks can be reduced.
“You do have the power yourself through making healthy choices.”
Agus says the other important take away is how environment affects health. For example, when Asian women are in Asia, they have a very high risk of liver cancer and stomach cancer. When they move to the U.S., those risks plummet. At the same time, they have an increased risk of breast cancer in the U.S.