Rethink the Statistics

As you conduct your research into treatment options, you will invariably discover cancer recovery statistics that detail cancer incidence, mortality, and five-year survival rates. Do not let these statistics paralyze you. Your response to them is critical.

Statistics measure populations. They can be interpreted in a great many ways. But statistics do not determine any individual case, including yours.

Just after my second surgery, I received a booklet filled with numerical tables, statistics, and graphs on all types of cancers. Of course I felt compelled to read all the information on lung cancer. The numbers on metastatic lung cancer were not promising. As I reflected on what I read, I felt frightened, depressed, and filled with despair, certain of my fast-approaching death.

Several days later I looked again at those statistics and realized that many people do survive. “What did the survivors do?” I wondered. “How can I learn from them?”

No matter how difficult your situation, realize that there is no type of cancer that does not have some rate of survival. This is a significant fact, and it is cause for reasonable hope. The question now becomes, “What can I do to maximize my chances of getting on the right side of these statistics?”…

…Interpret statistics as indications of progress. Determine to act with the conviction that you will be counted among the “survivor statistics.”

Cancer: 50 Essential Things To Do; Copyright Greg Anderson