Document Detail

Cancer overdiagnosis and overtreatment.
MedLine Citation:
PMID:  22472510     Owner:  NLM     Status:  In-Data-Review    
PURPOSE OF REVIEW: Overdiagnosis has become a major problem in medicine in general and cancer in particular. This is a summary of this problem.
RECENT FINDINGS: Because of earlier detection, the nature of cancer has changed, from a disease usually diagnosed at a late and incurable stage to a heterogeneous condition that varies from clinically insignificant to rapidly aggressive. Screening programs for cancer have resulted in a dramatic increase in the diagnosis of clinically insignificant disease, balanced by improved survival and mortality because of significant cancers being diagnosed at a more curable stage. Overdiagnosis requires the presence of microfocal disease and a screening test to identify this. This exists for breast, prostate, and thyroid cancers, and to a lesser degree for renal and lung cancer. The problem of cancer overdiagnosis and overtreatment is complex, with numerous causes and many trade-offs. It is particularly important in prostate cancer, but is a major issue in many other cancer sites. Screening for prostate cancer appears, based on the best data from randomized trials, to significantly reduce cancer mortality.
SUMMARY: Reducing overtreatment in patients diagnosed with indolent disease is critical to the success of screening.
Laurence Klotz
Publication Detail:
Type:  Journal Article    
Journal Detail:
Title:  Current opinion in urology     Volume:  22     ISSN:  1473-6586     ISO Abbreviation:  Curr Opin Urol     Publication Date:  2012 May 
Date Detail:
Created Date:  2012-04-04     Completed Date:  -     Revised Date:  -    
Medline Journal Info:
Nlm Unique ID:  9200621     Medline TA:  Curr Opin Urol     Country:  United States    
Other Details:
Languages:  eng     Pagination:  203-9     Citation Subset:  IM    
Division of Urology, University of Toronto, Toranto, Ontario, Canada.
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