The American Cancer Society has changed its stance on another cancer screening policy, and this time it involves the boys.
Turns out that the digital exam — or the scope, or the PSA test — might not be such a great thing after all.
That’s right, men. That “Guaranteed uncomfortable” feeling might be completely, utterly unnecessary.
Now they tell us.
So what gives? Has medicine turned a kinder, gentler cheek (ooh, bad reference) toward dealing with prostate cancer? Have docs been complaining they didn’t get into medicine to crawl up people’s a**holes?
Well, it turns out none of those tests is particularly reliable. False positives. False negatives. In other words, it looks like cancer but isn’t. Or “no cancer here,” except there is.
One mistake causes unnecessary worry, pain, money woes and aggravation; the other could leave you unexpectedly dead.
So the Cancer Society is saying what they shoulda said all along: The decision to test or not to test is best left up to the individual patient. This assumes that the patient makes an informed decision. And if you remember what assume does — makes an “ass” of “u” and “me” — that’s expecting a lot of the average patient.
Folks have seen a couple of episodes of ER or Grey’s Anatomy or (God help us!) House and think they’re informed.
Speaking of House, here’s a classic moment: