How valid is the use of all-cause mortality in randomized screening trials?
In the light of overdiagnosis, overtreatment and resultant deaths, should all-cause mortality be the end point in randomized screening trials?
This paper examines the validity of disease-specific deaths as an endpoint in randomized cancer screening trials.
‘Because all-cause mortality is not affected by bias in classifying the cause of death, it should be examined when interpreting the results of randomized cancer-screening trials.’
All-Cause Mortality in Randomized Trials of Cancer Screening. William C Black, David A Haggstrom and H Gilbert Welch. Journal of the National Cancer Institute Vol 94, issue 3. Pp 167-173.