Colorectal cancer remains the third most commonly diagnosed form of cancer in this country. It kills tens of thousands of Americans annually. Although detection of the illness is declining overall, and especially among older adults, specialists have expressed growing concern about its rising rates in younger patients. This has prompted experts to push for more screenings to discover this cancer earlier.
But a new, decade-long European study involving 80,000 participants has given experts in the field at least a pause and may be forcing a more nuanced consideration of colonoscopies — long considered a pricey, inconvenient, intrusive, but “gold standard” test in the battle against colorectal cancer.
The study offered a brusque reminder, especially to regular folks, that testing and early detection of serious illnesses do not automatically result in optimal outcomes that improve or extend lives. As Stat, the science and medical news site reported: