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Epidemiology & Biostatistics to inform Advanced Practice Nursing






Epidemiology & Biostatistics to inform Advanced Practice Nursing

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Case Summary

Most deaths in the United States are caused by cancer. Cancer is classified depending on the organ affected. This predisposes each gender to different kinds of cancer from the other. Patients are advised to carry out a frequent analysis of their risk factors that exposes them to different kinds of cancer. People with particular diseases that are related to cancer or those classified as being at high risks undergo screening tests. Shelby is one of these people who is suspected to be at high risk of developing the disease. Results from her screening test show that she is at high risk of cervical cancer and there was a recommendation for further tests. From her biological history, she is also at high risk of developing breast cancer since her partner grandmother died from the disease. Smoking, which is also high risk factor for individuals who are genetically predisposed, also forms part of her medical history. Mammogram and clinical breast examination are among the screening methods that can be applied to Shelby. Mammogram uses low doses of x-ray to detect changes that may be considered as abnormal in women’s breasts. In clinical breast examination, the doctor will use their sense of touch and sight to check for physical abnormalities in the women’s breasts. Though they have proved to be essential; for public protection, the reliability and validity of these two methods have however not been determined.


It is good to insist to Shelby that she should undergo the mammogram. This will help her know whether she indeed is suffering from the disease or not. Research shows that she is at high risk because of a combination of factors including her genetic history and her medical history. However, there is no necessity for an ultrasound since there is no research that shows that either is more reliable than the other. Therefore undergoing a mammogram and an ultrasound may just be the same as undergoing mammograms continually.

Response to Ms. Courtney’s Discussion

There are several factors that expose Shelby to cancer. However, being a woman cannot be termed as one of these factors. All people are exposed to cancer. Classification of cancer depends on the organ affected. Almost all organs in the body are affected by their own type of cancer. It would therefore be wrong to say that Shelby should undergo a screen because she is a woman. Aging and having children are normal events in one’s life that are not related to cancer. There may be other medical conditions that are associated with these events and stages in life but the types of cancer mentioned in the excerpt cannot be linked to these two events. The only valid points to support Ms. Courtney’s discussion would be that Shelby has a family history of cancer, her medical history shows that she smokes and that she had an abnormal cervical cancer screen. In addition, her argument that mammograms are78% cannot be ascertained since she has not stated the source of her findings and the related variables.

Response to Mr. Noel’s Remarks

Mr. Noel’s remarks are simply a summary of what was presented in the discussion of the week. However, there are some fallacies in his remarks. Throughout the remarks, Mr. Noel does not mention cancer and the reader has to keep wondering from time to time what Mr. Noel’s main subject is. The week’s discussion was not aimed at selecting a screening test, instead, it was aimed at determining whether the test selected was the most appropriate since the literature had already provided one test and had pints to support why it should be carried out on Shelby. However, it is true that the recommended screening test stayed in place after a review of the family history showed that Shelby was even more than likely exposed to cancer.