Despite of recent endeavours, the Brazilian public health system still faces a shortage of RT. Approximately 46% of the patients requiring treatment with RT (for non palliative purposes) are not having access to it. Undoubtedly, this shortage of RT has a tremendous negative impact in oncology outcomes, including overall survival. Our recent study quantifies the number of deaths potentially prevented if RT was universal for the most incident cancers in Brazil.
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Approximately 5,040 men with intermediate or high-risk prostate cancers were estimated to not receive radiotherapy in the Brazilian public health system. This lack of radical treatment in 2016 is expected to result in extra 562 deaths in the next 13 years for patients in the intermediate risk and 298 deaths in the next 10 years for patients in the high-risk category.
Likely, the number of preventable deaths would be even higher if the benefit of RT in the adjuvant/salvage setting and in initial low-risk patients with progressive disease were taken into consideration.
Written by: Lucas C. Mendez, Fabio Y. Moraes, Gustavo dos S. Fernandes, Eduardo Weltman
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