Importance of prognosis In Cancer

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The forecast is forecast o an estimate of the likelihood of recovery or survival after an illness. Most health professionals provide a statistic-based prognosis of how the disease works in studies in the general population. This means that his Prediction is not something written in stone. It is an estimate or assumptions about how you will act, but in general, some people will do much better and others will do worse than the “average.” There are few people who are “average” when it comes to their health.

The prognosis of cancer may depend on several factors, including the stage of the disease at diagnosis, the type and subtype of the cancer, the molecular profile of the tumor, and even gender. Let’s talk about how prognosis is determined and the limitations of the statistics used, especially in this era when treatments are improving.

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Forecast is a Statistic

Much of the information you’ll hear and read about the prognosis of your disease is based on statistics from studies with other people. It is important to note that these numbers are only numbers and do not consider individual variations. Most statistics are also somewhat outdated. For example, statistics evaluating 5-year survival for a particular disease may be several years, and since their publication, new and better treatments may be available. Lung cancer is an example where the” prognosis ” of the disease may not be very accurate. Many of the statistics we use to talk about survival are several years old. However, more new drugs have been approved for lung cancer in the past five years than in the 40 years prior to that time.

A good example is lung cancer. The prognosis for a person with stage 4 lung cancer with a specific genetic mutation (ALK rearrangement) would have been estimated at best as a year or less a few years ago, and only 1 to 2 percent of people lived 5 years. In 2019, the average survival for this particular molecular type of lung cancer is estimated to be 6.8 years with

Forecast and all patients with different cancer

Each individual cancer is different from the others. If there are 200 people with stage 2 non-small cell lung cancer in the room, then there are 200 types of cancer that differ in molecular profiles and other important options. In addition, each person has important differences that affect prognosis, such as age, general health, comorbidities, and ability to tolerate treatment. Check out some of the many factors. that can affect the survival of people with lung cancer.

Terms used to describe the prognosis of cancer

There are many terms your health care provider can use when talking about your prognosis. Some are more likely to be used than others based on the expected survival of the cancer. Other terms are most often used as part of clinical trials. Some of these terms include:

Survival rate: The survival rate is “the average amount of time someone is expected to survive cancer, and is usually determined based on a specific time period, such as a “5-year survival rate.” 

Mean survival rate: The average survival rate is a number that determines the time after which half of people with a particular type and stage of cancer are alive and 50 percent have died. In more aggressive tumors, such as lung cancer, the prognosis is often described this way.

Progression-free survival: Survival no progression or PFS is commonly used to describe the response to cancer treatment and refers to the average period of time during which the cancer does not grow or remains stable. For treatments that control the cancer rather than cure the disease, progression-free survival may be an indicator of how long treatment may last (before the cancer becomes resistant to treatment). PFS is often used when describing therapies such as targeted cancer therapy.

Disease-free survival: Disease-free survival refers to the period of time during which someone remains free of detectable cancer.

Overall survival: Overall survival refers to the average length of time a person survives after a cancer diagnosis until death from any cause, including cancer.

Improve Your Prognosis

In addition to the treatment your health care provider recommends, there are some things you can do yourself to improve your prognosis. Keep in mind that some people may succumb to the disease despite their best efforts to fight it, while others succeed almost without trying. However, there are a few things people can do to increase their odds. Finding support from friends or a cancer community or participating in regular exercise has been found to improve the survival of some people with some forms of cancer. 

A word of caution

It is important to emphasize once again what the prognosis means. Because it is a Statistic, it is an estimate of how someone will act based on the average outcome of a group of people. Just as we know that all people are of different heights and weights, we know that averages sometimes say little about an individual. In cancer, however, even more variables are considered than those that determine growth. They are also statistics derived from past experiences. Statistics can tell you how the “average” person handled a cancer similar to yours (but certainly different molecular) at a time when treatment may be different from today.

If you have been diagnosed with cancer, after understanding the limitations in evaluating your prognosis, there is another step that some people have found useful. Try rephrasing the statistics in your mind. For example, instead of thinking that 40 percent of people don’t survive for five years with a certain cancer, keep in mind that 60 percent of people really survive. And keep in mind that the statistics, the numbers we use to estimate the forecast, will look different in five years than they are today.​​

A few words from Get Meds Info

Some people find it helpful to get a prognosis for their cancer. They find that this encourages them to look at their list and do some things they’ve been putting off if their prognosis doesn’t match their hopes, or prepare for the well-being of loved ones who will stay when they leave. Others don’t want to hear their prognosis and find that they are emotionally hurt when given life expectancy. There’s no right or wrong, there’s only what you prefer. If you live with cancer, some family members or friends may disagree, but that’s not your decision. It’s only yours.

However, with advances in cancer treatment, it is often difficult to assess prognosis. Even a 6-month period of time can make the difference between a standard treatment that provided a prognosis and the adoption of a new treatment that could offer a very different prognosis. This is a good time to live with cancer, but perhaps a bad time to trust what a statistic-based prognosis might mean.

Also Known As: survival rate 

Examples: Jill gave a good prognosis for recovery from lung cancer, as it was detected in such early stage

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