Early Detection and Screening of Cancer
Cancer is one of the leading causes of morbidity and mortality worldwide, with approximately 14 million new cases in 2012 (Ferlay et al. Lyon, France: IARC, 2013). It refers to a large group of diseases resulting from abnormal and uncontrolled cell growth and proliferation. Such cells can have the potential to invade or spread to other parts of the body. Malignancy, carcinoma, tumours and neoplasms are other terminologies implying various aspects of this medical condition. In health care strategies and medical practice, screening programmes in both healthy and high-risk populations offer the opportunity to detect cancer early and timely, at a stage before onset of symptoms, and ideally before metastasis. Early detection of cancer can decrease morbidity, improve survival and in some situations treatment may limit to surgical removal alone if identifıed early enough. Mammography in women aged 50–70 years (even possibly starting at 40 years of age) and colonoscopy in the healthy population over 50 years of age play an important role in the early detection of cancer and are included in the recommended guidelines for cancer screening. Cancer is the second leading cause of death in the world can be tackled to an extent by early identification, timely intervention and treatment. Further research is very much needed in quest of easy accessible and acceptable screening methods and novel biomarkers.
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