Chapter 4

Lung Cancer Screening: Past, Present and Future

Nathaniel R. Little, Jeffrey A. Kern and James H. Finigan

Abstract

Lung cancer is the leading cause of cancer-related deaths worldwide. While smoking cessation efforts are imperative, development of effective lung cancer screening approaches are essential given current lung cancer prevalence. Historical attempts to screen lung cancer through chest radiography and sputum cytology resulted in earlier diagnosis of lung cancers, without improvement in cancer-related mortality or stage shift. The National Lung Screening Trial (NLST) demonstrated that low-dose computed tomography (LDCT) screening for lung cancer decreases cancer-related and all-cause mortality. Current consensus guidelines recommend annual LDCT screening for individuals at high-risk for the development of lung cancer. Prospective trials are needed to refine selection of optimal screening populations, duration and intervals. Successful implementation of lung cancer screening programs will depend upon creation of a multi-disciplinary team allowing for nodule surveillance with expertise in lung cancer diagnosis and treatment.

Total Pages: 51-70 (20)

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