Letter to Editor

Why? It is the question that I ask myself every day, every hour, every second...

Francisco Javier Torres-Gómez*

Published: 22 March, 2021 | Volume 5 - Issue 1 | Pages: 006-006

It is the dart that penetrates deep into my soul, every time I see with my own eyes how the incidence of cancer has grown in recent years. I am a pathologist. I am dedicated to diagnosing the disease from the cellular and tissue point of view. The answer to the question that haunts me may seem easy, simple, but I am not satisfied with knowing that advances in technology make it possible to diagnose a greater number of entities, many of them in early stages [1]. Of course, this statement is true. However, in recent years we have verified a greater number of cases with aggressive phenotypes, a fact that makes us ask ourselves certain questions. The first one is: Why?

We know that cancer is a multifactorial disease in which genetics and different environmental factors participate. Are we witnessing the concurrence of factors that facilitate the greatest degree of neoplasms? Are habits the cause of this paradigm shift? On the table for debate is the therapeutic success of new strategies, of new drugs, of new algorithms, but the morphology is also changing. This change is exacerbated in the times of pandemic that we have lived through [2]. Pathologists attend a number of cancer diagnoses that have grown exponentially, as has the histological grade, not the staging, of it. And the initial question remains in the air, why?

The fear of going to the hospital, the fear of self-exploration, the diversion of media attention to topics that arouse greater interest ... may be having a harmful effect on the health of patients [3].

I do not tell anything new, at least nothing that cannot be assumed by analyzing what happens every day in this new world, a world that will soon have to face, if not already, a cut in resources, research and other parameters that will negatively influence the answers to the eternal question: Why?

In the era of personalized medicine, the same one that has reached or is close to reaching great milestones in the survival of once-deadly diseases, the microscope shows a parallel reality and allows, at least, to be pessimistic, or at least realistic: suffering…

Read Full Article HTML DOI: 10.29328/journal.acst.1001024 Cite this Article Read Full Article PDF


  1. Bakouny Z, Hawley JE, Choueiri TK, Peters S, Rini BI, et al. COVID-19 and cancer: Current challenges and perspectives. Cancer Cell. 2020; 38: 629-646. PubMed: https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/33049215/
  2. Lee LYW, Cazier JB, Starkey T, Briggs SEW, Arnold R, et al. COVID-19 prevalence and mortality in patients with cancer and the effect of primary tumour subtype and patient demographics: a prospective cohort study. Lancet Oncol. 2020; 21: 1309–1316. PubMed: https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/32853557/
  3. Levine RL, Rathmell WK. COVID-19 impact on early career investigators: a call for action. Nat Rev Cancer. 2020; 20: 357–358. PubMed: https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/32503987/

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