Adults who skip recommendations for cancer screenings may be more likely than those who don’t skip them to die prematurely from conditions not related to malignancies, a U.S. study suggests.

Researchers believe skipping screenings may be a marker for more generally neglecting one’s own health.

“It was not a direct effect of missing the cancer screening that led to the increased mortality in the non-compliers,” said study co-author Dr. Paul Pinsky of the National Cancer Institute in Bethesda, Maryland.

“Rather, we believe that non-compliance with the screening was a marker of a wider health behavioral profile of general non-compliance with or non-adherence to medical tests and treatments,” Pinsky stated. “Non-compliance with medical procedures has also been linked, in this and other studies, to other unhealthy lifestyle factors such as obesity and smoking, and to lower education.”


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