Data from randomised controlled trials of mammographic screening can be used to determine the extent of any overdiagnosis, as soon as either a time equivalent to the lead-time has elapsed after the final screen, or the control arm has been offered screening. This paper reviews those randomised trials for which breast cancer incidence data are available. In recent trials in which the control group has not been offered screening, an excess incidence of breast cancer remains after many years of follow-up. In those trials in which the control arm has been offered screening, although there is a possible shift from invasive to in situ disease, there is no evidence of overdiagnosis as a result of incident screens.
Screening mammography has been shown to be effective for reducing breast cancer mortality. According to screening theory, the first expected consequence of mammography screening is the detection of the disease at earlier stages and this diagnostic anticipation changes the population incidence curve, with an observed increase in incidence rates at earlier ages. It is unreasonable to expect that the age-specific incidence will ever return to pre-screening levels or to anticipate a significant reduction of incidence at older ages immediately after the first screening round. The interpretation of incidence trends, especially in the short term, is difficult. Methodology for quantification of overdiagnosis and statistical modelling based on service screening data is not well developed and few population-based studies are available. The overtreatment issue is discussed in terms of appropriateness of effective treatment considering the question of chemotherapy in very early stages and the use of breast conserving surgery.
There is a delicate balance between the favourable and unfavourable side-effects of screening in general. Overdiagnosis, the detection of breast cancers by screening that would otherwise never have been clinically diagnosed but are now consequently treated, is such an unfavourable side effect. To correctly model the natural history of breast cancer, one has to estimate mean durations of the different pre-clinical phases, transition probabilities to clinical cancer stages, and sensitivity of the applied test based on observed screen and clinical data. The Dutch data clearly show an increase in screen-detected cases in the 50 to 74 year old age group since the introduction of screening, and a decline in incidence around age 80 years. We had estimated that 3% of total incidence would otherwise not have been diagnosed clinically. This magnitude is no reason not to offer screening for women aged 50 to 74 years. The increases in ductal carcinoma in situ (DCIS) are primarily due to mammography screening, but DCIS still remains a relatively small proportion of the total breast cancer problem.
The problems of diagnosis and treatment of Lyme neuroborreliosis can be minimised by strictly following the clinical diagnostic criteria, and understanding the pitfalls of laboratory tests. The diagnosis is based solely on objective clinical findings, with serologic test results used only to confirm the diagnosis. It must be underscored that serologic testing, when ordered without regard for clinical presentation (ie, used as a screen), may be misleading due to its extremely low positive predictive value. Enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay should always be confirmed by Western blot. The cerebrospinal fluid Borrelia burgdorferi antibody index is more meaningful than simple titres of specific antibody. Polymerase chain reaction is still a research tool and should not be utilised without clinical correlation. All serologic tests and polymerase chain reaction may remain positive long after successful treatment. Overdiagnosis and overtreatment can be minimised by following these guidelines. Keywords: Lyme disease; neuroborreliosis; Borrelia burgdorferi
Early detection of prostate cancer is associated with the diagnosis of a considerable proportion of cancers that are indolent, and that will hardly ever become symptomatic during lifetime. Such overdiagnosis should be avoided in all forms of screening because of potential adverse psychological and somatic side effects. The main threat of overdiagnosis is overtreatment of indolent disease. Men with prostate cancer that is likely to be indolent may be offered active surveillance. Evaluation of active surveillance studies and validation of new biological parameters for risk assessment are expected.
There is interest in estimating and attributing temporal changes in incidence of breast cancer in relation to the initiation of screening programmes, in particular to estimation of overdiagnosis of breast cancer as a result of screening. In this paper, we show how screening introduces complexities of analysis and interpretation of incidence data. For example, lead time brings forward time- and age-related increases in incidence. In addition, risk factors such as hormone replacement therapy use have been changing contemporaneously with the introduction of screening. Although we do not indicate exactly how such complexities should be corrected for, we use some simple informal adjustments to show how they may account for a substantial proportion of increased incidence, which might otherwise erroneously have been attributed to overdiagnosis. We illustrate this using an example of analysis of breast cancer incidence data from Sweden.
This study aimed to assess the mean sojourn time (MST) of prostate cancer, to estimate the probability of overdiagnosis, and to predict the potential reduction in advanced stage disease due to screening with PSA. The MST of prostate cancer was derived from detection rates at PSA prevalence testing in 43 842 men, aged 50–69 years, as part of the ProtecT study, from the incidence of non-screen-detected cases obtained from the English population-based cancer registry database, and from PSA sensitivity obtained from the medical literature. The relative reduction in advanced stage disease was derived from the expected and observed incidences of advanced stage prostate cancer. The age-specific MST for men aged 50–59 and 60–69 years were 11.3 and 12.6 years, respectively. Overdiagnosis estimates increased with age; 10–31% of the PSA-detected cases were estimated to be overdiagnosed. An interscreening interval of 2 years was predicted to result in 37 and 63% reduction in advanced stage disease in men 65–69 and 50–54 years, respectively. If the overdiagnosed cases were excluded, the estimated reductions were 9 and 54%, respectively. Thus, the benefit of screening in reducing advanced stage disease is limited by overdiagnosis, which is greater in older men.
Estimates of overdiagnosis in mammography screening range from 1% to 54%. This review explains such variations using gradual implementation of mammography screening in the Netherlands as an example. Breast cancer incidence without screening was predicted with a micro-simulation model. Observed breast cancer incidence (including ductal carcinoma in situ and invasive breast cancer) was modeled and compared with predicted incidence without screening during various phases of screening program implementation. Overdiagnosis was calculated as the difference between the modeled number of breast cancers with and the predicted number of breast cancers without screening. Estimating overdiagnosis annually between 1990 and 2006 illustrated the importance of the time at which overdiagnosis is measured. Overdiagnosis was also calculated using several estimators identified from the literature. The estimated overdiagnosis rate peaked during the implementation phase of screening, at 11.4% of all predicted cancers in women aged 0–100 years in the absence of screening. At steady-state screening, in 2006, this estimate had decreased to 2.8%. When different estimators were used, the overdiagnosis rate in 2006 ranged from 3.6% (screening age or older) to 9.7% (screening age only). The authors concluded that the estimated overdiagnosis rate in 2006 could vary by a factor of 3.5 when different denominators were used. Calculations based on earlier screening program phases may overestimate overdiagnosis by a factor 4. Sufficient follow-up and agreement regarding the chosen estimator are needed to obtain reliable estimates.
This chapter addresses issues relevant to prostate cancer overdiagnosis. Factors promoting the overdiagnosis of prostate cancer are reviewed. First is the existence of a relatively large, silent reservoir of this disease, as can be seen by evaluating autopsy studies and histologic step-sectioning results of prostates removed for other causes. The second main factor responsible for prostate cancer overdiagnosis is fairly widespread prostate-specific antigen and digital rectal examination-based screening, which has been fairly widely practiced in the United States for the past 20 years among heterogeneous groups of men. This has resulted in the identification of many men from this reservoir who otherwise may never have been diagnosed with symptomatic prostate cancer and is substantially responsible for the current annual incidence to mortality ratio for prostate cancer of approximately 6 to 1. Finally, the relatively indolent natural history and limited cancer-specific mortality as reported in a variety of contemporary randomized screening and treatment trials is reviewed. We attempt to quantitate the proportion of newly diagnosed prostate cancers that are overdiagnosed using various trial results and models. We explore the impact of prostate cancer overdiagnosis in terms of patient anxiety and the potential for overtreatment...
Objective To elicit women’s responses to information about the nature and extent of overdiagnosis in mammography screening (detecting disease that would not present clinically during the woman’s lifetime) and explore how awareness of overdiagnosis might influence attitudes and intentions about screening.
Knowledge of the likelihood that a screen-detected cancer case has been overdiagnosed is vitally important for treatment decision making and screening policy development. An overdiagnosed case is an excess case detected because of cancer screening. Estimates of the frequency of overdiagnosis in breast and prostate cancer screening are highly variable across studies. In this article we identify features of overdiagnosis studies that influence results and illustrate their impact using published studies. We first consider different ways to define and measure overdiagnosis. We then examine contextual features and how they affect overdiagnosis estimates. Finally, we discuss the effect of estimation approach. Many studies use excess incidence under screening as a proxy for overdiagnosis. Others use statistical models to make inferences about lead time or natural history and then derive the corresponding fraction of cases that are overdiagnosed. We conclude with a list of questions that readers of overdiagnosis studies can use to evaluate the validity and relevance of published estimates and recommend that authors of publications quantifying overdiagnosis provide information about these features of their studies.
Stories in the public media that 30 to 50% of screen-detected breast cancers are overdiagnosed dissuade women from being screened because overdiagnosed cancers would never result in death if undetected yet do result in unnecessary treatment. However, such concerns are unwarranted because the frequency of overdiagnosis, when properly calculated, is only 0 to 5%. In the previous issue of Breast Cancer Research, Duffy and Parmar report that accurate estimation of the rate of overdiagnosis recognizes the effect of lead time on detection rates and the consequent requirement for an adequate number of years of follow-up. These indispensable elements were absent from highly publicized studies that overestimated the frequency of overdiagnosis.
Overdiagnosis of thyroid cancer was propounded regarding the rapidly increasing incidence in South Korea. Overdiagnosis is defined as ‘the detection of cancers that would never have been found were it not for the screening test’, and may be an extreme form of lead bias due to indolent cancers, as is inevitable when conducting a cancer screening programme. Because it is solely an epidemiological concept, it can be estimated indirectly by phenomena such as a lack of compensatory drop in post-screening periods, or discrepancies between incidence and mortality. The erstwhile trials for quantifying the overdiagnosis in screening mammography were reviewed in order to secure the data needed to establish its prevalence in South Korea.
Randomised controlled trials have shown that the policy of mammographic screening confers a substantial and significant reduction in breast cancer mortality. This has often been accompanied, however, by an increase in breast cancer incidence, particularly during the early years of a screening programme, which has led to concerns about overdiagnosis, that is to say, the diagnosis of disease that, if left undetected and therefore untreated, would not become symptomatic. We used incidence data from two randomised controlled trials of mammographic screening, the Swedish Two-county Trial and the Gothenburg Trial, to establish the timing and magnitude of any excess incidence of invasive disease and ductal carcinoma in situ (DCIS) in the study groups, to ascertain whether the excess incidence of DCIS reported early in a screening trial is balanced by a later deficit in invasive disease and provide explicit estimates of the rate of 'real' and non-progressive 'overdiagnosed' tumours from the study groups of the trials. We used a multistate model for overdiagnosis and used Markov Chain Monte Carlo methods to estimate the parameters. After taking into account the effect of lead time, we estimated that less than 5% of cases diagnosed at prevalence screen and less than 1% of cases diagnosed at incidence screens are being overdiagnosed. Overall...
Overdiagnosis is diagnosis of cancers that would not present within the life of the patient and is one of the downsides of screening. This applies to low-grade ductal carcinoma in situ and some small grade 1 invasive cancers. Radiologists are responsible for cancer diagnosis, but at the time of diagnosis they cannot determine whether a particular low-grade diagnosis is one to which the definition of overdiagnosis applies. Overdiagnosis is likely to be driven by technological developments, including digital mammography, computer-aided detection and improved biopsy techniques. It is also driven by the patient's fear that cancer will be missed and the doctor's fear of litigation. It is therefore an issue of importance for radiologists, presenting them with difficult fine-tuned decisions in every assessment clinic that are ultimately counted later by those who evaluate their screening.
Increased incidence of ductal carcinoma in situ (DCIS) and invasive breast cancer (IBC) after introduction of organized screening has prompted debate about overdiagnosis. The aim was to examine the excess in incidence of DCIS and IBC during the screening period and the deficit after women left the program, and thereby to estimate the proportion of overdiagnosis. Women invited to the Norwegian Breast Cancer Screening Program were analyzed for DCIS or IBC during the period 1995–2009. Incidence rate ratios (IRRs) were calculated for attended vs. never attended women. The IRRs were adjusted by Mantel-Haenszel (MH) method and applied to a set of reference rates and a reference population to estimate the proportion of overdiagnosis during the women's lifespan after the age of 50 years. A total of 702,131 women were invited to the program. An excess of DCIS and IBC was observed among women who attended screening during the screening period; prevalently invited women aged 50–51 years had a MH IRR of 1.86 (95% CI 1.65–2.09) and subsequently invited women aged 52–69 years had a MH IRR of 1.56 (95% CI 1.45–1.68). In women aged 70–79 years, a deficit of 30% (MH IRR 0.70, 95% CI 0.62–0.80) was observed 1–10 years after they left the screening program. The estimated proportion of overdiagnosis varied from 10 to 20% depending on outcome and whether the women were invited or actually screened. The results highlight the need for individual data with longitudinal screening history and long-term follow-up as a basis for estimating overdiagnosis.
Overdiagnosis (and overtreatment) of cancers not bound to become symptomatic during lifetime is an unavoidable drawback of mammography screening. The magnitude of overdiagnosis has been estimated to be in the range of 5-10%, and thus acceptable in view of screening benefits as to reduced mortality. In a recent research article in BMC Women's Health, Jørgensen, Zahl and Gøtzsche suggest that overdiagnosis may be as high as 33%, based on their analysis of breast cancer incidence in screened and non-screened areas in Denmark. Here we consider how reliable such analyses can be, why it might have been useful to adjust comparisons between screened and non-screened areas for early detection lead time, and what further evidence might be needed to build on or confirm these results.
This study aimed to estimate the extent of ‘overdiagnosis' of prostate cancer attributable to prostate-specific antigen (PSA) testing in the Cambridge area between 1996 and 2002. Overdiagnosis was defined conceptually as detection of prostate cancer through PSA testing that otherwise would not have been diagnosed within the patient's lifetime. Records of PSA tests in Addenbrookes Hospital were linked to prostate cancer registrations by NHS number. Differences in prostate cancer registration rates between those receiving and not receiving prediagnosis PSA tests were calculated. The proportion of men aged 40 years or over with a prediagnosis PSA test increased from 1.4 to 5.2% from 1996 to 2002. The rate of diagnosis of prostate cancer was 45% higher (rate ratios (RR)=1.45, 95% confidence intervals (CI) 1.02–2.07) in men with a history of prediagnosis PSA testing. Assuming average lead times of 5 to 10 years, 40–64% of the PSA-detected cases were estimated to be overdiagnosed. In East Anglia, from 1996 to 2000, a 1.6% excess of cases was associated with PSA testing (around a quarter of the 5.3% excess incidence cases observed in East Anglia from 1996 to 2000). Further quantification of the overdiagnosis will result from continued surveillance and from linkage of incidence to testing in other hospitals.
This is the author accepted manuscript. The final version is available from American association for Cancer Research via http://dx.doi.org/10.1158/1078-0432.CCR-15-1080; PURPOSE:
This study aims to quantify the probability of overdiagnosis of prostate cancer by polygenic risk.
We calculated the polygenic risk score based on 66 known prostate cancer susceptibility variants for 17,012 men aged 50-69 years (9,404 men identified with prostate cancer and 7,608 with no cancer) derived from three UK-based ongoing studies. We derived the probabilities of overdiagnosis by quartiles of polygenic risk considering that the observed prevalence of screen-detected prostate cancer is a combination of underlying incidence, mean sojourn time (MST), test sensitivity, and overdiagnosis.
Polygenic risk quartiles one to four had 9%, 18%, 25% and 48% of the cases respectively. For a PSA test sensitivity of 80% and MST of nine years, 43%, 30%, 25% and 19% of the prevalent screen-detected cancers in quartiles one to four, respectively, were likely to be overdiagnosed cancers. Overdiagnosis decreased with increasing polygenic risk, with 56% drop between the lowest and the highest polygenic risk quartiles.
Targeting screening to men at higher polygenic risk could reduce the problem of overdiagnosis and lead to a better benefit to harm balance in screening for prostate cancer.; NP is Cancer Research UK Clinician Scientist Fellow.
The COGS project was funded through a European Commission's Seventh Framework Programme grant (agreement number 223175 - HEALTH-F2-2009-223175)...
Pashayan, Nora; Duffy, Stephen W.; Neal, David E.; Hamdy, Freddie C.; Donovan, Jenny L.; Martin, Richard M.; Harrington, Patricia; Benlloch, Sara; Al Olama, Ali Amin; Shah, Mitul; Kote-Jarai, Zsofia; Easton, Douglas F.; Eeles, Rosalind; Pharoah, Paul D. P
Fonte: Nature Publishing GroupPublicador: Nature Publishing Group
This is the final published version. It first appeared at http://www.nature.com/gim/journal/vaop/ncurrent/full/gim2014192a.html.; Purpose:
This study aimed to quantify the probability of overdiagnosis of prostate cancer by polygenic risk.
We calculated the polygenic risk score based on 66 known prostate cancer susceptibility variants for 17,012 men aged 50?69 years (9,404 men identified with prostate cancer and 7,608 with no cancer) derived from three UK-based ongoing studies. We derived the probabilities of overdiagnosis by quartiles of polygenic risk considering that the observed prevalence of screen-detected prostate cancer is a combination of underlying incidence, mean sojourn time (MST), test sensitivity, and overdiagnosis.
Polygenic risk quartiles 1 to 4 comprised 9, 18, 25, and 48% of the cases, respectively. For a prostate-specific antigen test sensitivity of 80% and MST of 9 years, 43, 30, 25, and 19% of the prevalent screen-detected cancers in quartiles 1 to 4, respectively, were likely to be overdiagnosed cancers. Overdiagnosis decreased with increasing polygenic risk, with 56% decrease between the lowest and the highest polygenic risk quartiles.
Targeting screening to men at higher polygenic risk could reduce the problem of overdiagnosis and lead to a better benefit-to-harm balance in screening for prostate cancer.; N.P. is a Cancer Research UK Clinician Scientist Fellow. The COGS
project was funded through a European Commission?s Seventh
Framework Programme grant (agreement number: 223175-