Cancer Screening in People Who Have Chronic Disease: The Example of Kidney Disease

Germaine Wong, Kirsten Howard, Allison Tong, Jonathan C. Craig

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

17 Citations (Scopus)


Cancer screening in people with chronic illness has been the subject of considerable debate recently. Despite the increased incidence of cancer and higher risk of cancer deaths in selected populations, such as those with kidney disease, the benefits-to-harms ratio of cancer screening is uncertain and is likely to be different to people without chronic illnesses because of the expected higher competing risk of death from disease other than cancer, and a higher risk of complications associated with the screening, the diagnostic, and the treatment processes. Using kidney disease as an example, the authors reviewed the current evidence for early cancer detection through screening in people with two or more coexistent chronic diseases, discussed the accepted principles underpinning cancer screening, and the applicability of these concepts to individuals with chronic disease. This review suggests that future research that evaluates the screening test accuracy, quality of life of having cancer, and cancer treatment effectiveness, targeting those with chronic illnesses are necessary for the development of an effective, safe, and acceptable cancer screening program among people with two or more chronic diseases.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)72-78
Number of pages7
JournalSeminars in Dialysis
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 22 Feb 2011
Externally publishedYes


  • Chronic disease
  • early detection
  • kidney disease
  • cancer


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