New cases of anal cancer on the rise

June 29, 2009 9:46:04 AM PDT
Farrah Fawcett died from anal cancer, a fairly rare type of cancer that can often be treated and even cured.But as in Fawcett's case, it can also be fatal.

An estimated 710 people will die of anal cancer in 2009. The cause is often unknown though a viral infection or someone's sexual activity can be a contributor.

The number of new cases has been on the rise.

Fawcett had been battling the cancer on and off for three years. She underwent chemotherapy and was believed to be in remission in 2007. She also underwent alternative treatments. But the cancer came back.

Anal cancer is found mainly in adults in their early 60's and affects women more often than men.