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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
1954 - Dr Cuyler Hammond
He has deep doubts aboutall the studies reported so far. He suspects that the interviewers of lung-cancer patients probably induce an emotional bias in their victims who will thereby be led to make suspicious confessionals of heavy smoking. He says that it is extremely difficult to find a control group with the matched characteristics, of age, social standing, occupational habits, and regional location, of any given sick group. He warns against the false premise which might be exposed to prove only that smokers produce earlier symptoms rather than more cancer. He suggests that even if there were no significant association between smoking and cancer in the general population, a telling one might be found in the hospital population. He is even sour about the claims of the filter-tipped cigarettes, remarking in his wry way that the carbon in tobacco smoke probably neutralises some toxic agents, and that if the filter removes those carbon particles ‘filter cigarettes would do more harm than good.’”
Sound familiar?

Not only was Dr. Hammond the Chief Medical Statistician [epidemiologist] for the American Cancer Society, but at the time of the publication of The Guardian piece in 1954, he was also a 4-pack a day smoker.

https://medium.com/@jbhandley/an-an...-distracting-research-ae09fd767e1f#.3z5u909i7
 
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Sound familiar?

Not only was Dr. Hammond the Chief Medical Statistician [epidemiologist] for the American Cancer Society, but at the time of the publication of The Guardian piece in 1954, he was also a 4-pack a day smoker.

https://medium.com/@jbhandley/an-an...-distracting-research-ae09fd767e1f#.3z5u909i7
This is why there is so much emphasis on "consensus" a meaningless term. There were lots and lots of doctors who really didn't see cigarettes as a cause of cancer.
 

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This reminds me of the mammogram issue.

People were boiling mad when the recommendation came to raise the routine mammography age. "People will die!" Everyone shouted.

I kept explaining, "no, identifying these cancers earlier isn't permitting women to live longer. They just know about their cancer,longer. You see, if you are diagnosed at 42 and die at 50, your cancer survival time is considered '8 years.' But if you are diagnosed at 48 and die at 50, your survival time is only '2years.' What we actually WANT is something that lets women live to 60. That's the goal."

Hashtag #funwithnumbers
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
... and if a woman lives five years from her diagnosis, she is considered a cancer cure, even if she dies five years and one day after.

Looks better in the number crunching.
 

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This reminds me of the mammogram issue.

People were boiling mad when the recommendation came to raise the routine mammography age. "People will die!" Everyone shouted.

I kept explaining, "no, identifying these cancers earlier isn't permitting women to live longer. They just know about their cancer,longer. You see, if you are diagnosed at 42 and die at 50, your cancer survival time is considered '8 years.' But if you are diagnosed at 48 and die at 50, your survival time is only '2years.' What we actually WANT is something that lets women live to 60. That's the goal."

Hashtag #funwithnumbers
I've become considerably less interested in cancer screening as I've begun to understand the different behaviors of cancers.

Early detection might remain a laudable goal if it caught some deadly cancers in time to make a difference and didn’t bother anyone. But it is bothering people. Tens of thousands of South Koreans have undergone surgical procedures for cancers that likely would never have threatened their lives, and the overdiagnosis/overtreatment problem exists to varying degrees for every cancer test.
To some extent, how long people live after a cancer diagnosis has a lot to do with what sort of cancer they have. Diagnosing more very slow cancers or even cancers that simply never move at all, distorts the statistics big time. Look, people are living longer with cancer!
 
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