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37. Better Testing

When cancer is detected early it can be treated more effectively and odds of survival improve. That's why regular testing is so important.

  • Cancer Type
    and Survival Rate
  • Prostate 98%
  • Breast 88%
  • Cervical 71%
  • Colon 64%
  • Liver 10%
  • Pancreatic 5%
  • Test for
    Early Detection
  • PSA
  • Mammogram
  • Pap Smear
  • Colonoscopy
  • None
  • None
Highest Survival Rates.. are for cancers that can be detected early through reliable tests (and because they are early stage, surgery often is an option)... poorest outcomes are for cancers where there is no effective screening, and so they are at an advanced stage once diagnosed.




Do Most People Get Tested? Well, to take mammograms as an example… there are about 38 million of them a year, which is 70% of all American women between the ages of 25 and 50
Digital Mammograms
These provide a digitized image of the breast, which has more clarity than the x-ray image traditionally used in mammograms. About 32% of all mammogram clinics in the US now have at least one "digital machine." (NYT 4/10/08)
CT Lung Scans
These scans also provide more clarity than traditional x-rays and some experts argue that CT Scans detect more Stage 1 lung cancer, which can lead to more surgical solutions.
Colon "Flat Growths"
Colonoscopies mainly detect polyps (often precancerous) that protrude from the colon wall. But the test misses growths that are flat against the colon wall -- even though they may be the most dangerous abnormalities in the colon.