Sunday, February 16, 2020

Can overdiagnosis of cancer become a problem?

Image result for cancer cells images

Cancer is the leading cause of death across the globe. For years now, researchers have led meticulous studies focused on how to stop this deadly disease in its tracks. An estimated 1 in 2 people now receive a cancer diagnosis at some point in their lives and with that comes overdiagnosis, which can reach up to 11,000 cancers in women and 18,000 cancers in men each year. Cancer overdiagnosis can negatively impact a person’s mental health and cause them to undergo harsh treatments when they may not be necessary.

Most overdiagnoses occur during routine procedures that detect cancers that would otherwise remain undetected. In addition, early detection of abnormal cells could also be attributed to overdiagnosis. Many people would argue that overdiagnosis is better than underdiagnosis, and that screening has already been at the heart of saving many people’s lives.

There are many treatments available to treat the cancers and many people are able to have long, healthy lives when they use maintenance therapy to manage these types of cancer. It is important to note that when a person receives a treatment harsher than is necessary for their type of cancer, a doctor has misdiagnosed cancer, not overdiagnosed it. Cancer screenings nevertheless save lives, and ultimately, the earlier they detect cancer, the higher the chance of survival and the lower the chance of recurrence.

The evidence for this is irrefutable.

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