Saturday, August 28, 2010

Oesophageal oncology obese observation...

The Press Association report that rates of oesophageal (food pipe) cancer "spiked by 50% over the last 25 years". In the Cancer Research UK press release they say poor diet and higher levels of obesity could be behind the increase:
"But we think the obesity epidemic may be a big reason behind the increase. We know that being overweight significantly increases the risk of adenocarcinoma – the main type of oesophageal cancer that's on the up. Our changing diets are also likely to be influencing the rise with people eating less fruit and vegetables."
That, at first glance may sound like a handy PC excuse - like blaming speeding on not having speed cameras - but there is growing evidence that has been looked at for years now and not just the 'overall impact of obesity on population health [and] health-care costs' but the 'underlying adenocarcinoma pandemic in the new millennium'. Adenocarcinoma is on the rise, not just in the throat; there are "consistent upward trends observed worldwide across both sexes"; the odd thing is that the pipe cancer increase is in men and another seeming sex-specific adenocarcinoma is the relatively steep increase in lung adenocarcinoma incidence in younger females despite a downturn in overall "normal" lung cancer.

However (and in no way am I meaning to cast doubt, I just love the quote) in all this one thing should be clear, Sherlock (ACD):
It is a capital mistake to theorize before one has data. Insensibly, one begins to twist facts to suit theories, instead of theories to suit facts.
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