January 8, 2016

ACCEPTING THAT YOU'RE HEALTHY:

Cancer screening benefits are overstated, experts claim (James Meikle,  6 January 2016, The Guardian)

The benefits of cancer screening have been overstated and the practice may not even save lives, experts in the US and Germany have claimed.

While there may be fewer deaths from the specific cancer for which screening takes place, little account is taken of the harm some patients suffer psychologically and medically because of overdiagnosis and complications from treatment, an article and editorial in the BMJ medical journal suggest.

An analysis by Vinay Prasad at Oregon Health and Science University, Portland, and colleagues suggests screening tests may be giving "false positive" results (suggesting abnormalities that turn out not to be there) and finding harmless cancers that might never have caused symptoms.

When it comes to prostate cancer screening, generally accepted now as unreliable, men diagnosed with the diseases are more likely to have a heart attack, take their own lives in the year after diagnosis or die of complications from treatment, they say.

Posted by at January 8, 2016 5:45 PM

  

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