The number of women who obtain cancer screening remains low, and this proportion might have declined during the COVID-19 pandemic. The objective of this study is to investigate optimal screening strategies in women who receive some but not all cancer screening recommended by the US Preventive Services Task Force (USPSTF).
This modeling study included a total of 20 million simulated US women. Four validated mathematic models and 45 screening strategies were modeled to combine screenings for cervical, colorectal, breast, and/or lung cancer (LC). The primary outcome of the study was the modeled life-years gained from restricted cancer screenings.
The findings suggested that it was possible to reduce screening intensity to 1 carefully chosen test per year. This was true for women who were ineligible for LC screening. Similarly, it was possible to reduce the screening intensity to 2 tests per year on eligible women while maintaining more than 93% of the maximum benefits. Strategies that were highly ranked were screened for various cancers but they were less often recommended by the USPSTF.
The research concluded that women who were noncompliant with cancer screening guidelines might be able to alleviate USPSTF-recommended screening intensity without reducing the overall benefits.