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Rural patients report cancer earlier

November 12, 2007

In a study by two Dartmouth-Hitchcock Medical Center doctors, research reveals that rural cancer patients present at earlier stages than do patients in urban areas. This finding contradicts the common belief that rural patients with cancer report it at a later stage than urban patients.

This study analyzed records of over 290,00 patient with colorectal and lung cancer from 2000 to 2003.

As reported in Medical News Today, Dr. Ian Paquette, author of the study, says "The proportion of urban patients presenting with metastatic cancer is alarming. This study highlights the need for better screening efforts for colorectal cancer and the need to develop an effective screening program for people at high risk for lung cancer."

The study appears in the November issue of The Journal of the American College of Surgeons (J Am Coll Surg. 2007 Nov;205(5):636-41).