Patients pass away before they are diagnosed
A look at the ratio of diagnosed vs. diseased patients from the Swedish cancer registry, reflects the difficulties of diagnosing pancreatic cancer in time for effective treatment.
For diseases like breast cancer and colorectal cancer, where screening for early detection is conducted, the number of diagnosed patients (blue) is much higher than the number of diseased patients. For pancreatic cancer, the number of diseased even surpass the number of diagnosed, because the patients pass away before they are even diagnosed.
In pancreatic cancer – perhaps more so than in any other form of cancer – an earlier diagnosis may indeed save more lives than therapy.
Ref: Diagnosed and deceased cancer registry, Sweden, 2017