Oregon oncologists might have learned that the rates of cervical cancer fatalities may be much higher than originally expected. A study published in the journal Cancer showed that black women were 77 percent more likely to die from cervical cancer than previously thought while white women were 47 percent more likely.
Part of the reason that more women were likely to die from cervical cancer than previously thought is because previous studies did not include women who had had their cervixes removed. Because the magnitude of cervical cancer is much larger than originally thought, experts recommend that women continue to get screened for it. The cancer itself is highly preventable as there is a vaccine that prevents one of the viruses that can cause it.
When it comes to the racial disparity, black women may be more at risk due to lack of access or limited access to screenings or vaccinations. As such, there need to be initiatives that focus on providing better access to cancer screening programs and prevention for at risk communities. The American Cancer Society recommends that women should being getting cancer screens at the age of 21 and a pap and HPV test starting at the age of 30.
A person who follows the recommendations regarding cancer screenings but is given a delayed diagnosis and is harmed as a result may want to meet with an attorney to see what recourse might be available. If it can be determined that the doctor failed to read test results correctly, this could constitute compensable medical malpractice.