A review of more than 4,600 medical notes where doctors predicted survival showed a wide variation in errors, ranging from an underestimate of 86 days to an overestimate of 93 days.
And it does not appear that more experienced or older doctors are any better at predicting when somebody will die than their younger counterparts.
Regular monitoring of prostate cancer as a treatment option offers the same chances of survival 10 years after diagnosis as surgery or radiotherapy, a major study into the disease has discovered.
The decade-long trial, which examined men with localised prostate cancer, found survival rates were approximately 99%, irrespective of the treatment administered.
There was no spread of the disease in around 80% of men who were actively monitored during the University of Oxford study. But having surgery or radiotherapy reduced the risk of cancer spreading even further, dropping by more than half against those being monitored, to less than 10%.
The review of existing research on the subject was carried out by a team at the Marie Curie palliative care research department at University College London (UCL).
Paddy Stone, professor of palliative and end-of-life care at the department, said: “Delivering the most appropriate care and treatments for those with terminal illnesses is often dependent on doctors making an accurate prognosis. Knowing how much time is left can also better equip patients and their carers to make more informed choices about their care.”
Two out of three employees go to work when they are feeling unwell and feel guilty if they take time off sick, a new report shows.
A survey of 1,300 workers by online jobs site CV-Library found that most only take one or two days off work because of sickness every year.
Virtually all of those questioned said they were less productive when they did not feel well and over half revealed that their employer does not send them home when they were sick.