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05 September 2014 @ 07:42 am
Some things are getting better  
5 positive trends over the last few decades

Thanx to andrewducker
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Magenta: Witch's Hatmagentamn on September 5th, 2014 12:41 pm (UTC)
The abortion rate has gone done partly because of more use of contraceptives, but also because it's MUCH harder to get an abortion these days.

The cancer rate may not have gone done at all. There is evidence that we are detecting cancers that would have been taken care of by the immune system, but doctors are afraid to not treat once detected, and counting and over-treating cancer in general.
Arthur and Kevin's Nellorat: cat_relaxingnellorat on September 5th, 2014 01:40 pm (UTC)
I'm ambivalent about all the info about over-treating cancers. OTOH, I think most people having double mastectomies partly as prevention are phobic. OTOH, as someone with family histories of both colon and breast cancer, I's rather not count on my immune system and would go with normal treatment.

Your 1st comment is one reason I liked that the statistic was teen pregnancies and abortions--so counted either way. But I am particularly angry at the unevenness with which abortion is available now, with the burden on the poor.
Magenta: Witch's Hatmagentamn on September 5th, 2014 02:52 pm (UTC)
I was thinking more of prostate cancer, which seems to be treated very unevenly, sometimes far too aggressive, but once they ramped back the standards, some men are not getting the test in a timely fashion. Not a "wait and see" approach to cancer, but evidence that some tumors classified as cancers may be so slow growing that they should not be treated aggressively in elderly patients, for example.
Arthur and Kevin's Nellorat: ratsie_tupelo_hatnellorat on September 5th, 2014 03:06 pm (UTC)
I can see that about slow-growing cancers. As you know, Bob, we have pet rats, and rats are tumor factories--less when females are spayed, but still. (You can see that Tupelo has a mammary tumor in this photo.) I've long thought that the counsel of our vet about tumors in old rats is more sensible than I've ever heard from a doctor about cancer in old people.

Also, sadly no surprise that there's a shift straight from to9o much to not enough.
Johnjohnpalmer on September 9th, 2014 02:08 am (UTC)
Well, and it's complicated. If a man is 70 years old, what are the odds that he'll die before 80? x%. What are the odds that he'll be killed, *just by this tumor*, in 10 years? y%. If x% dwarfs y%, they recommend watchful waiting (I think).