Dating in college is pointless
Neither myself, nor my editors, nor the numerous readers of this material have noticed this error until December 5th, 2013, when I received a note from a concerned reader who has noted my error.Here is what the actual text had said: "A CT examination with an effective dose of 10 millisieverts (abbreviated m Sv; 1 m Sv = 1 m Gy in the case of x rays.) may be associated with an increase in the possibility of fatal cancer of approximately 1 chance in 2000. In other words, for any one person the risk of radiation-induced cancer is much smaller than the natural risk of cancer." [link] This is a classical case of "confirmation bias," and I regret misinforming readers by making this unfortunate error.According to the United States Food and Drug Administration..."."  In other words, a single, virtual colonoscopy turns an otherwise absolutely healthy person with a lifetime risk of colon cancer under 5% into a cancer-prone sitting duck with a 20% risk of contracting any type of cancer. According to the FDA document I cited, the risk of fatal cancer from a single CT-related radiation exposure isn't 1 in 5 but 1 in 2000.Considering these odds, you are actually two hundred times safer living next-door to a Russian-built nuclear power plant your entire life than having just one single CT scan. And since virtual colonoscopies are now recommended every five years, your cumulative exposure to radiation by the time you reach your seventieth birthday will be similar to witnessing not one, not two, not three, not even four, but five nuclear blasts, and your risk of developing any kind of cancer will be five out of five, or exactly 100% The statistical representation of repetitive risk isn‘t a simple linear sum of the totals, but a regressive calculation.In this case, the rate of cancer risk increase is cumulative and exponential, because each successive irradiation of aging body carries a far greater risk than the previous one five years before.In other words, the true risk of any cancer from five successive virtual colonoscopies between the ages of 50 and 70 is far greater than 100%.
And you get to live about the same age-adjusted lifespan after the treatment.
Thus, doing nothing buys you at least an extra eight years of normal life and care-free bliss!
— Fourth, there is greater than 95% chance that you will succumb to any other terminal disease or old age before colorectal cancer has a chance to kill you, while any attempt to eliminate that 5% risk of colorectal cancer with screening colonoscopies increases your cumulative risk of death far greater than 5%. So ask yourself this simple question: would you rather take a 5% chance of dying from a large colorectal tumor eight years from now; undergo surgery and chemo today, wear a colectomy bag for the next eight years, and most likely die anyway before eight years are up from some other cancer, stroke, or heart attack caused by post-treatment complications? Rabeneck; Ann Intern Med 2009; 1-8; [link] — Screening and Surveillance for the Early Detection of Colorectal Cancer and Adenomatous Polyps, 2008: A Joint Guideline from the American Cancer Society, the US Multi-Society Task Force on Colorectal Cancer, and the American College of Radiology; Levin, Bernard, at al; CA Cancer J Clin 2008 58: 130-160; [link] — The Effect of Fecal Occult-Blood Screening on the Incidence of Colorectal Cancer; Mandel, Jack S., Church, Timothy R., Bond, John H., Ederer, Fred, Geisser, Mindy S., Mongin, Steven J., Snover, Dale C., Schuman, Leonard M.; N Engl J Med 2000 343: 1603-1607; [link] — Population-based surveillance by colonoscopy: effect on the incidence of colorectal cancer.
This increase in the possibility of a fatal cancer from radiation can be compared to the natural incidence of fatal cancer in the U. That said, I still think that anyone exposing himself/herself to CT scans in the situations that aren't life-threatening, is making a grave mistake, especially when this "anyone" is a child.
The lifetime increase of cancer risk related to radiation isn't linear, but, as a note below explains, "cumulative and exponential." It is even more so in the era of near-constant exposure to cell towers, police and aviation radars, Wi-Fi routers, and the Fukushima- and Chernobul-like environmental disasters.