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GOV'T WRONG ON CANCER SCREENING
boblonsberry.com ^ | 05/23/12 | Bob Lonsberry

Posted on 05/23/2012 5:48:20 AM PDT by shortstop

I’m not a doctor.

But I have a prostate.

And my wife has breasts.

And we’d like to keep them. And we’d like to stay alive.

So I’m suspicious of recent pronouncements by government panels. Pronouncements that have turned everything we’ve been told about cancer upside down.

Screening, the government people say, isn’t necessary.

At least not as necessary as most people think.

Mammograms? Not so much.

PSA? Not at all.

Some cancers don’t need to be found, the government experts have said, and some cancers don’t need to be treated.

Testing and treating, the new story goes, are difficult and expensive, and sometimes they’re not worth the effort. There are too many false positives, and too many unnecessary treatments, and too many inconvenienced patients, and we’d be better off if we just stopped looking so hard for cancer.

That’s what they told us last year about breast cancer, that’s what they told us this week about prostate cancer.

Don’t worry, be happy.

Hope and change.

Forward.

It seems reducing the cost of health care is going to have a body count.

And I say, “Bull crap.”

The government may not value my life and the lives of my loved ones, but I do. And better safe than sorry.

And how to deal with tests which may have a high rate of false positives is for me to decide, not the government.

The stunning underpinning of the new recommendations is that a certain rate of death due to undetected and untreated cancer is acceptable. It becomes a statistics game, a cost-benefit analysis where the benefit is seen through the eyes of accountants instead of through the eyes of people whose lives are saved.

If we simply don’t test, we find fewer cancers. If we find fewer cancers, we treat fewer cancers. Yes, some will die as a result, but we will save a lot of money.

Welcome to government-managed health care. The single-payer option is waiting for you. Now you can live, and die, just like Europeans.

The government which cannot rein in entitlements, which borrows one-third of everything it spends, which anticipates growing debt for decades into the future, that government has found the one place where pennies count.

The place to cut spending is in the diagnosis of deadly disease. Hopefully it won’t kill your mom and dad.

Or you, before your children are raised.

Illegal aliens and Medicaid wastrels clog the emergency rooms with their stuffy noses and drug scams, and Uncle Sam says you can skip your mammogram.

Ditto for the blood test to see if you have prostate cancer.

Some diseases don’t need to be diagnosed, some diseases don’t need to be treated, some people don’t need to be saved.

Unfortunately, you and I are some of those people.

We may well be the marginal few whose lives are sacrificed in the name of efficiency and cost cutting. As American medicine and American government move from a focus on the individual to a focus on the whole, as we abandon individuality for collectivism, some are going to get crushed.

Or the panels are going to get screwed.

Maybe the American people will see through this. Maybe the real doctors will be able to make their voices heard. Maybe the ethic and culture of American medicine will survive this onslaught.

Maybe we will remember that in our society, we value all people and we value all life. And if a thousand false positives save one life, we consider that worthwhile, because we know how precious that life is to that person and her loved ones.

So to hell with the government recommendations. And to hell with the government attempt to invade and oppress this last and most-intimate part of our lives.

The government is not my doctor, and the government does not make my health decisions.

Get your mammograms, get your PSAs. Be aware of the possibility for a false positive and be thoughtful as you decide about further testing and treatment. Consult with your doctor – the professional who looks you in the eye and knows you as a person – and make your decision.

Don’t accept their decision – make your decision.

Because forewarned is forearmed.

And it’s your life, not the government’s.

Get screened, early and often.


TOPICS: Health/Medicine
KEYWORDS: cancer; obamacare; romneyagenda; romneycare; romneycare4u; romneydeathpanels; screenings
Not a day goes by that I don't get further infuriated by the stupid decisions made by someone in the federal government or our current corrupt administration.
1 posted on 05/23/2012 5:48:27 AM PDT by shortstop
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To: shortstop
The purpose of Obamacare is to kill off old white people ASAP so we can change the voting demographics of the country ASAP.

Period.

2 posted on 05/23/2012 5:51:51 AM PDT by E. Pluribus Unum (Government is the religion of the sociopath.)
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To: shortstop

I’ve never had a cancer screening. I’m 58. My kids are grown and everything is hunky dory. If I get cancer, they probably won’t catch it until stage four and I will die. But I will die when the Lord is good and ready for me to die.

Philippians 1:21, “For me to live is Christ, and to die is gain.”


3 posted on 05/23/2012 5:53:56 AM PDT by cuban leaf (Were doomed! Details at eleven.)
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To: shortstop

Some screenings really are more dangerous than what they screen for.


4 posted on 05/23/2012 5:57:06 AM PDT by greatvikingone
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To: shortstop

hopeless blog pimp...


5 posted on 05/23/2012 5:57:23 AM PDT by Nifster
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To: Nifster

Jeppers, no kidding.


6 posted on 05/23/2012 6:00:36 AM PDT by Mr. Lucky
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To: Nifster
..hopeless blog pimp...

How about explaining your comment?

7 posted on 05/23/2012 6:04:50 AM PDT by shortstop (It's too bad that stupidity isn't painful)
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To: shortstop

I don’t agree with the govt on this, as I believe if only one person is helped, it’s worth it.

Unfortunately, screening failed to find my wife’s breast cancer, my father’s prostate cancer, and my cousins pancreatic cancer.


8 posted on 05/23/2012 6:06:24 AM PDT by stuartcr ("When silence speaks, it speaks only to those that have already decided what they want to hear.")
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To: shortstop

Screening caught my mother’s breast cancer; she lived 13 more years after diagnosis and treatment. My kids got to grow up knowing their grandma, thanks to the “unnecessary” screening.

Screw this government cost-cutting BS. November cannot come soon enough for me.


9 posted on 05/23/2012 6:11:25 AM PDT by onemiddleamerican (FUBO and all your terrorist buddies)
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To: E. Pluribus Unum

The terrorist released to supposedly die, lived another three years because he no longer had to be subjected to UK death panels.

REVIEW & OUTLOOK
Updated May 21, 2012, 7:12 p.m. ET

The Megrahi Prognosis

The terrorist got better cancer care in Libya than in Britain.

The death Sunday of Abdel Baset al-Megrahi, the convicted Lockerbie bomber, has prompted renewed controversy over his August 2009 “compassionate” release from Scottish prison. At the time, British doctors claimed he had three months to live. He survived nearly three years.

Karol Sikora, a leading cancer specialist who examined Megrahi shortly before his release, explains that predicting how long a patient with end-stage prostate cancer has to live is “a value judgment of probability,” not an exact science. But Dr. Sikora also writes ...

http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424052702303610504577417741083445200.html


10 posted on 05/23/2012 6:15:13 AM PDT by KeyLargo
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To: shortstop
I have a slightly elevated PSA and have had it for years. The MD suggested a biopsy and after doing a bit of checking I declined he had no problem with that. If I live long enough I'll get prostrate cancer but its likely something else will kill me.

If folks want PSA screening then go for it but for me I don't worry about it..

11 posted on 05/23/2012 6:32:27 AM PDT by montanajoe
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To: shortstop
"Screening, the government people say, isn’t necessary. "

Of course not, because screening costs money and the less cancer we find the less cancer we have to treat. Plus what you don't know will still kill you and we the all caring government won't have to use our vote buying money to care for you.

This is just a run up to all out death panels. Later when it's proven this is a false premise they will switch to it being immoral to treat cancer patients as it will deny other treatable people needed care.

Evil bastards

12 posted on 05/23/2012 6:44:26 AM PDT by precisionshootist
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To: shortstop

Screenings have been overdone. Way too many test. Some of it it caused by doctors worried about trial lawyers and some the doc’s just want to pad their accounts.


13 posted on 05/23/2012 6:52:42 AM PDT by trailhkr1 (All you need to know about Zimmerman, innocent = riots, manslaughter = riots, guilty = riots)
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To: montanajoe
I have a slightly elevated PSA and have had it for years. The MD suggested a biopsy and after doing a bit of checking I declined he had no problem with that. If I live long enough I'll get prostrate cancer but its likely something else will kill me.

. There was 2 docs on TV yesterday saying other docs are pushing men to go on and have invasive treatment for elevated PSA leading to impotence etc when if they just watch those levels it never leads to cancer. Many men have the elevated levels and never get cancer.

14 posted on 05/23/2012 6:56:30 AM PDT by trailhkr1 (All you need to know about Zimmerman, innocent = riots, manslaughter = riots, guilty = riots)
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To: shortstop
Note that the government panels issuing these “recommendations” are not made up of physician experts who treat cancer, but statistician types who just look at aggregate data. The real cancer experts do not agree with these changes in screening criteria. The rationale for these government panel recommendations also have little to do with surviving cancer, but everything to do with keeping down costs, presumably to a government run health care system. Would you trust your life to a government bureaucrat who tells you that it makes no difference how often you get screened for common cancers or trust a physician who actually treats cancer? You are seeing the real death panels.
15 posted on 05/23/2012 6:58:46 AM PDT by The Great RJ
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To: shortstop

Welcome to the Obama Holocaust signed onto by the RATs in Congress. Never Again is here in my opinion.


16 posted on 05/23/2012 7:03:57 AM PDT by ExTexasRedhead
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To: onemiddleamerican

I’m with you! I was diagnosed with early stage breast cancer a month ago and just started chemo to be followed by minimal surgery and then radiation. There is no cancer elsewhere in the body other than a couple of lymph nodes and a complete cure is expected. I owe my life to early detection. The idea that we do not deserve the screening that can save our lives is disgusting and outrageous to me!


17 posted on 05/23/2012 7:06:30 AM PDT by wontbackdown
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To: shortstop

I worked in a Hospital Urology Department. PSA screenings are vital and don’t let anyone tell you otherwise. The Department Chief is adamant about this as were all the other Drs I worked with.


18 posted on 05/23/2012 7:08:14 AM PDT by Clintons Are White Trash (Lynn Stewart, Helen Thomas, Rosie ODonnell, Maureen Dowd, Medea Benjamin - The Axis of Ugly)
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To: shortstop
PSAs are important mostly for the changes between them: if you get a routine PSA and six months later the PSA increases, it's time to get some other tests. I am a Vietnam Veteran and as is usual for us, we were exposed to dioxin via Angent Orange and we have a much greater chance of getting aggressive prostate cancer. In 2005 and 2006, my PSAs taken during routine physicals changed upward from 3 to 5.5. I underwent a biopsy (uncomfortable but necessary) and cancer was discovered in 6 out of eight areas of my prostate with Gleason score of 8. I immediately found the best prostate cancer surgeon I could find at Johns Hopkins and had the prostate removed. I have recovered well (i.e., no loss of necessary functions) and I have been cancer-free these last 6 years when I probably would have been dead by now.

Do not listen to this government, get screened often, particularly if you served in Vietnam. If you do find cancer, see somebody who has had a lot of experience and is skilled enough to spare your nerves down there, if you follow my drift.

Good luck all of you!

19 posted on 05/23/2012 7:10:56 AM PDT by Chainmail
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To: trailhkr1
Many men have the elevated levels and never get cancer.

I couldn’t agree with you more and many of the comments on this topic last night addressed this very issue. As well, a biopsy does carry some significant risks. Dr Thomas Stamey was the doctor who did the study that originally popularized the PSA approach and he came out years after his original work to essentially debunk it and say that while PSA was good for identifying some things, it was a very poor marker for prostate cancer. Amazing how inertial works in the medical industry and his later work seems to be completely ignored. On a related theme, there was a study that came out about 10 years ago where the researchers were dissecting young men who had been killed.... they found that a very high percentage of them (10 or 15% or something like that) were found to have cancer cells in their prostate. What does that mean.... start screening young men and removing their prostate by the time they are 20 years old? Now that would be pretty stupid. The reality is that there isn’t a decent test yet that differentiates for cancerous cells that are a problem and those that aren’t. Stamey himself says that the best approach is to be very watchful but the prostate needs to be digitally examined regularly once a man hits a specific age i.e. 40 or 50 or so.

20 posted on 05/23/2012 7:33:55 AM PDT by hecticskeptic
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To: The Great RJ

“Note that the government panels issuing these “recommendations” are not made up of physician experts who treat cancer, but statistician types who just look at aggregate data.”

A cancer surgery specialist who disagrees:

“Far too often we do a million-dollar workup for patients with early stage breast cancer, and there is pretty much zero good evidence that these workups improve survival, improve care, or otherwise do anything except cost a lot of money, delay definitive treatment, expose the patient to radiation, and provoke worry in both patient and practitioner.”

http://scienceblogs.com/insolence/2012/04/10/choosing-wisely-when-it-comes-to-medicin/

His blog is worth reading. No personal affiliation or interests other than thinking its one of the best reads around, esp. if you’re interested in “alternative” medicine & various forms of modern quackery.


21 posted on 05/23/2012 8:22:30 AM PDT by gzzimlich
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To: shortstop
Government wrong?? Impossible, I say!!

Look how well that food pyramid worked out!





/s

22 posted on 05/23/2012 8:23:25 AM PDT by KosmicKitty (WARNING: Hormonally crazed woman ahead!!)
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To: shortstop

I think an across-the-board examination needs to be made of Obama-era medical decisions that on their surface seemed to be designed to increase mortality.

This is not as outrageous as it sounds, because these people have outrageous, and oftentimes murderous ideas, which they have made little effort to conceal.

Many in the “pseudo-scientific radical left” are all in favor of just about anything that kills people, individually or collectively. They see people as “enemies of the environment”, and a pestilence on the land that needs to be dramatically reduced, “for the environment”.

And as pedophiles are attracted to working with children, these mentally ill individuals are attracted to systems that are supposed to benefit the health of people.

The bottom line is that right now, people who want to kill thousands or even millions of other people, are trying to figure out ways of doing it, and getting away with it.

If they can deny them the means of discovering they have a dangerous disease, it is disconnected enough for them to do so.


23 posted on 05/23/2012 8:29:09 AM PDT by yefragetuwrabrumuy
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24 posted on 05/23/2012 8:35:24 AM PDT by TheOldLady
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To: shortstop

You might want to read further on this issue. From what I’ve seen this may be one time the government is actually correct. European governments have backed off on cancer screening for awhile due to its ineffectiveness and potential harm. One place to get more information is the Center for Medical Consumers. It’s a private organization which debunks false health information to protect the consumer:

http://medicalconsumers.org/2012/03/08/what-mds-dont-know-about-cancer-screening-tests/


25 posted on 05/23/2012 9:52:13 AM PDT by Madam Theophilus
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To: precisionshootist

Won’t those same people have to treat the cancer after it appears?


26 posted on 05/23/2012 3:05:30 PM PDT by stuartcr ("When silence speaks, it speaks only to those that have already decided what they want to hear.")
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To: stuartcr
by then it's too late. Then you just get a pain pill and die with dignity.

trust me this is a set up for rationing (death camps).

27 posted on 05/23/2012 7:32:23 PM PDT by precisionshootist
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To: precisionshootist

That’s just not true. My wife is still alive, and my father did not die from his cancer.


28 posted on 05/24/2012 4:52:35 AM PDT by stuartcr ("When silence speaks, it speaks only to those that have already decided what they want to hear.")
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To: stuartcr

Well that is good to hear for sure. I apologize if my comments sounded personal. They were meant to be purely political in nature. Prayers to you and your family.


29 posted on 05/24/2012 7:22:33 AM PDT by precisionshootist
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To: precisionshootist

No problem. Generalizations and political statements aren’t usually accurate anyway, too many variables.


30 posted on 05/24/2012 3:18:21 PM PDT by stuartcr ("When silence speaks, it speaks only to those that have already decided what they want to hear.")
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