Have the benefits of cancer screening in reducing mortality from breast cancer, colorectal cancer, and cervical cancer been established?
The overall benefits of cancer screening in reducing mortality from breast cancer, colorectal cancer, and cervical cancer are established, despite the problem of overdiagnosis, which is recognized and is subject to research. World Cancer Report encourages research on the development and implementation of evidence-based screening procedures.
For screening procedures that are established, one goal is to reduce cost and enable implementation with minimal technology, so that implementation in low- and middle-income countries is practicable.
For screening procedures that are being developed, such as those for lung cancer, research is needed to validate the efficacy (i.e. reduced mortality) and to demonstrate the specificity and sensitivity.
IARC Learning Resources
Improving the Quality of Cancer Screening
Self-paced online learning programme including interactive modules and quizzes on "Principles of Cancer Screening", Planning and Implementing a Cancer Screening Programme", and "Quality of Cancer Screening Programmes". Complete the full 6-hour programme and get an IARC Learning certificate!
The European Code Against Cancer. Recommendation No. 12. Screening
Self-paced 15-minute interactive module on ECAC's 12th recommendation: "Take part in organized screening programmes for: bowel cancer for men and women, breast cancer and cervical cancer for women".
- Chapter 6.6. Screening: From biology to public health
- Chapter 5.5. Colorectal cancer: Decreasing disparities and promoting prevention are policy priorities
- Chapter 5.9. Breast cancer: Multiple, often complex, risk factors
- Chapter 5.10. Cervical cancer: Successes in some communities to be extended worldwide
- IARC (2019). Colorectal Cancer Screening, IARC Handbooks of Cancer Prevention Volume 17.
- IARC (2016). Breast Cancer Screening, IARC Handbooks of Cancer Prevention Volume 15.
- World Health Organization, (2018). Improving data for decision-making: a toolkit for cervical cancer prevention and control programmes.
- World Health Organization, (2013). WHO guidelines. Guidelines for screening and treatment of precancerous lesions for cervical cancer prevention.
- Basu P, et al. (2021). Cancer screening in the coronavirus pandemic era: adjusting to a new situation. JCO Glob Oncol (7): 416-424.
- Basu P, et al. (2021). Leveraging the vertical investments made to contain COVID-19 to redefine cancer screening programme evaluation in resource constrained settings – a case study from Bangladesh. Prev Med 151: 106624.
- Ginsburg O, et al. (2021). Eliminating cervical cancer in the COVID-19 era. Nat Cancer 2(2): 133-134.
- Lei, J et al. (2020). HPV Vaccination and the Risk of Invasive Cervical Cancer. New England Journal of Medicine. 383(14): 1340-1348.
- Villain P, et al. (2021). Cross‐sectional survey of the impact of the COVID‐19 pandemic on cancer screening programs in selected low‐and middle‐income countries: Study from the IARC COVID‐19 impact study group. Int J Cancer 149 (1):97-107.
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