Recent research published in JAMA Internal Medicine has shed light on the effectiveness of cancer screenings. Dr. A. M. McCarthy, University of Oslo, Norway; The study, led by Michael Brethauer, found that most routine cancer screenings prolong patient survival. A notable exception was sigmoidoscopy, for colorectal cancer screening, which showed a potential benefit of 110 days overall.
While many doctors support cancer screening as a way to save lives, it is important to weigh the benefits against the potential harms. For example, colon cancer screening can sometimes cause complications such as bleeding or perforation. Studies show that while certain tests may reduce mortality from a particular cancer, they may not increase overall longevity if the risks for some outweigh the benefits for others.
The research team conducted a large meta-analysis of randomized clinical trials, and looked at the lifetime benefits of several common cancer screening tests These included studies in colorectal, lung , prostate and breast cancer. The results were interesting: in addition to the aforementioned benefits of sigmoidoscopy, other tests such as mammography, FOBT screening, colonoscopy, prostate cancer screening, and lung cancer screening, showed no significant extension of survival
However, it is important to note that the reviewers are not suggesting that we drop all shows. They argue that trials with a balance of benefits and harms, considering the incidence and mortality of target cancers in relation to potential risk factors, could continue to be valuable