The American Medical Association, American Cancer Society, and Susan G. Komen for the Cure would have you believe so...especially if you follow the published (bragged about) improvement in 5-year survival rates by the very successful Susan G. Komen for the Cure folks!
In fact, YOUR belief in this is critical to their fundraising and sustenance.
But, does it?
Let's ask a very simple question:
If 100 people all die of a very aggressive cancer at age 70 and all were diagnosed at age 67, what is the 5-year survival rate?
Now, one more very simple question...if the same 100 people all die of the same aggressive cancer at age 70 and all were diagnosed at age 62 (thanks to more aggressive and earlier screening), what is the 5-year survival rate?
This isn't a trick question.
And the last simple question...was there ANY improvement in actual survival?
So...who REALLY benefited and who was hurt from the "early detection"??
1. The Medical Industrial Complex - via additional and longer treatment (great for revenues)
2. The advocates for "early detection" - via improved (misleading) 5-year survival rates that allow for fundraising
Who was hurt?
The person with the cancer...via:
1. More treatment
2. Longer treatment
And, most importantly...
3. Removal of an additional 5 years of enjoying life...and an additional 5 years "battling" for it...thanks to "early detection".
The point here, cancer is a very complex. Don't be misled by "the numbers".
Please, read this very powerful article from a very powerful writer on this very topic...a cancer survivor, herself.