Screening could find more lung cancer, but price high

May 14, 2014

More rigorous screening with low dose CT scans could catch tens of thousands of US lung cancer cases in the next five years, but at a price tag of $9.3 billion, researchers said Wednesday.

The forecast made by experts at the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center in Seattle, Washington, was based on US government recommendations for more CT scans rather than X-rays, particularly for people who have smoked for many years.

The US Preventive Services Task Force has called for annual low dose computed tomography scans in high-risk people on Medicare, the US government health insurance program mainly for seniors.

Annual is now recommended for people age 55-80 who smoked at least 30 packs a year, and who currently smoke or have quit within the past 15 years.

Gradually implementing the recommendations for more rigorous low dose CT scans over five years would result in nearly 55,000 more cases detected, said the findings.

Most of these cases would be early stage lung cancer, which could lead to improved prognosis and survival, the researchers said.

The total five cost for the imaging, diagnostics and cancer care would amount to $9.3 billion.

If that were divided among every member of Medicare, it would be $3.00 per month extra in premiums, the study said.

"If we can diagnose lung cancers at an earlier stage, patients can be treated far more effectively and survival prognosis is much better," said lead study author Joshua Roth.

"However, the key to the success of this is ensuring that those who are at high risk actually undergo screening and subsequently receive appropriate treatment."

Explore further: Canadian group gives guideline recommendations for lung cancer screening

Related Stories

Canadian group gives guideline recommendations for lung cancer screening

September 4, 2013
Lung cancer is the most common cause of cancer death in Ontario. Screening for lung cancer using low-dose computed tomography (LDCT) has been the subject of many research studies since the 1990s. The National Lung Screening ...

Panel backs lung cancer screening for some smokers

July 29, 2013
Government advisers have endorsed lung cancer screening for the first time. They say certain current and former heavy smokers should get annual CT scans, a type of X-ray, to cut their chances of dying of the disease.

Annual lung cancer screening benefits outweigh risks for some

December 31, 2013
(Medical Xpress)—You may have heard in recent days about new guidelines on lung cancer screening put forth by the U.S. Preventative Services Task Force.

Final recommendations on lung cancer screening

December 30, 2013
High-risk adults between the ages of 55 and 80 should receive annual lung cancer screening with low-dose computed tomography, according to final recommendations from the U.S. Preventive Services Task Force being published ...

Insufficient evidence for low-dose CT lung CA screening

January 22, 2014
(HealthDay)—In contrast to a recommendation from the U.S. Preventive Services Task Force (USPSTF), the American Academy of Family Physicians (AAFP) has concluded that there is currently insufficient evidence to recommend ...

Lung cancer not on many women's radar, survey finds

May 13, 2014
(HealthDay)—U.S. women still see breast cancer as a bigger killer than lung cancer, despite the fact that lung cancer kills more Americans each year—women and men—than any other cancer.

Recommended for you

How cancer metastasis happens: Researchers reveal a key mechanism

January 18, 2018
Cancer metastasis, the migration of cells from a primary tumor to form distant tumors in the body, can be triggered by a chronic leakage of DNA within tumor cells, according to a team led by Weill Cornell Medicine and Memorial ...

Modular gene enhancer promotes leukemia and regulates effectiveness of chemotherapy

January 18, 2018
Every day, billions of new blood cells are generated in the bone marrow. The gene Myc is known to play an important role in this process, and is also known to play a role in cancer. Scientists from the German Cancer Research ...

These foods may up your odds for colon cancer

January 18, 2018
(HealthDay)—Chowing down on red meat, white bread and sugar-laden drinks might increase your long-term risk of colon cancer, a new study suggests.

The pill lowers ovarian cancer risk, even for smokers

January 18, 2018
(HealthDay)—It's known that use of the birth control pill is tied to lower odds for ovarian cancer, but new research shows the benefit extends to smokers or women who are obese.

Researchers develop swallowable test to detect pre-cancerous Barrett's esophagus

January 17, 2018
Investigators at Case Western Reserve University School of Medicine and University Hospitals Cleveland Medical Center have developed a simple, swallowable test for early detection of Barrett's esophagus that offers promise ...

Scientists zoom in to watch DNA code being read

January 17, 2018
Scientists have unveiled incredible images of how the DNA code is read and interpreted—revealing new detail about one of the fundamental processes of life.

0 comments

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.