Having a new illness is a challenge that may arise for any individual throughout life.When we or those around us get sick, we will definitely ask our doctor questions similar to the ones below.

What will be the end of my illness?

What is the probability that I will be completely cured?

Will I survive?

How likely am I to recover?

The questions above are asked to find out the prognosis of the disease.

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What is the meaning of prognosis in medicine?

This medical term is used to estimate the outcome of a particular disease or to assess the response to treatment of a disease.

For example, when we say that the prognosis of a simple viral cold is great, it means that this disease is completely curable and its signs and symptoms will be completely eliminated.

When we ask a doctor about the outcome and the final condition of our disease, in fact our questions revolve around the meaning of prognosis, questions such as:

Will the symptoms of the disease completely disappear?

How debilitating will this disease be?


How does the doctor answer these questions?

The answer to these questions is not based on the doctor’s speculation

The main source of these answers is the results of extensive research and studies conducted on a large number of people with a specific disease around the world.

In fact, this collection is the result of extensive studies that allow your physician to comment on the course of your disease, the order in which symptoms appear, the rate of response to treatment, the curability or disability of your disease.

When your doctor says you have an 80 percent chance of recovery, that number comes from a collection of statistics from many studies around the world.

Important statistical terms in medicine

There are three common statistical terms in medical science that are used to determine the prognosis of diseases:

  • survival rate:

A very large group of people who all have the same disease are examined and followed up to determine the distance of their death from the time of diagnosis. Then the average is taken from the duration of survival. This number is expressed as a percentage.

For example, we say that people with papillary thyroid cancer are almost 100 percent more likely to survive five years after diagnosis.

  • progression _free survival: 

 Determines how long a patient stays cured after receiving treatment, does not progress, and does not get worse.

  • survival time:

Determines the length of time a person has from the time of diagnosis until the time of death.

Advances in science and disease prognosis

With the progress of medicine, the knowledge of the medical community about the prognosis of various diseases has increased.

Progress in medical discoveries such as:

Advanced diagnostic technologies

New therapies

New drugs

a variety of immunotherapies, etc.

Prognosis of most diseases improves every year. In addition, early diagnosis and latest treatments have improved disease survival and prognosis.

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