Cervical and Prostate Cancer Screening Driven by Physician Preference

Incidence of cervical cancer is only .0073% (Stats Canada, 2008), but the incidence of prostate cancer is much higher.  According to Stats Canada (2008) incidence of prostate cancer is .01402% (http://www.statcan.gc.ca/pub/82-003-x/2012001/article/11616/tbl/tbla-eng.htm ).

In other words, prostate cancer is 19.2 times more prevalent than cervical cancer.

Women are pressured to have pap tests to screen for cervical cancer at every opportunity.  Some physicians have their offices phone women to “invite” them in to be screened each year.  Many women have prescriptions withheld until first submitting to a pap test.  I have never heard of a male being pressured into a prostate exam, or having health care withheld until submitting to a prostate exam.

It appears cancer screening is driven by physician preference in this case.

One comment

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