Disease Screening Essay

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Disease screening is when an approach is employed to attempt an identification of a disease in an individual, prior to the presence of any diagnostic signs or symptoms of the disease (https://www.urmc.rochester.edu/Encyclopedia/Content.aspx?ContentTypeID=85&ContentID=P00965). Screening has been implemented for several cancers in the United States over the past few decades. For example, the colonoscopy for colorectal cancer and the mammogram for breast cancer. There is some controversy if the said screenings are responsible for the resulting decline in deaths from these specific cancers. Many cancers, including pancreatic cancer, have a better survival rate when able to be detected early (Poruk, Firpo, Adler, & Mulvihill, 2013).
The greatest odds of survival are when the tumor can be identified in a stage that it can be treated with surgical resection. However, only 10-20% of pancreatic cancer patients are currently being diagnosed at this stage (Poruk et al, 2013). The incidence and population mortality rate from pancreatic cancer are certainly large enough for the medical field to study screening. There is likely a significant time-period where pancreatic cancer can be discovered in an early and treatable stage. One study on cancer cells during autopsy of pancreatic cancer patients found an average of 11.7 years
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One of these is diet and nutrition. It is thought that a high-fat diet that contains larger amounts of red and/or processed meats and low amounts of fruits and vegetables may contribute to pancreatic cancer (Dunphy, 2008) Also, a lack of physical activity may increase risk, but this may be because those with low activity are more likely to be obese, which is one of the known risk factors. Finally, increased coffee and alcohol have been suggested risk factors but the link has not been shown by reliable research studies

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