Rapid responses are electronic letters to the editor. They enable our users to debate issues raised in articles published on thebmj.com. Although a selection of rapid responses will be included online and in print as readers' letters, their first appearance online means that they are published articles. If you need the url (web address) of an individual response, perhaps for citation purposes, simply click on the response headline and copy the url from the browser window. Letters are indexed in PubMed.
Of course, cancer incidence is the question which is most intriguing from a theoretical point of view. But it is disappointing and, frankly, irritating that several decades into evidence-based medicine, the effect of screening on life expectancy, or, better still, on QALY, has either not been investigated in this study, or not been reported.