Breast cancer disproportionately affects women and prostate cancer, men but almost 13% of all reported cancer diagnoses implicate the lung. Lung cancer is the second most common variety of cancer in both women and men.
Recent statistics for lung cancer in the USA include at least 228,000 new diagnoses of the disease, reports the American Cancer Society. This figure favors men slightly.
As most of you reading will know, lung cancer is the most common cause of death from this disease. More people die of lung cancer every year than do from breast, prostate and colon cancers combined.
Lung cancer predominantly affects older people, with most patients diagnosed after age 65. The average age at diagnosis for lung cancer diagnosis is 70.
With early diagnosis, lung cancer can be effectively treated. There are close to 500,000 survivors of lung cancer in the USA today.
Good news for lung cancer patients
The National Lung Cancer Screening Trial tested low-dose computed tomography (LDCT) of the chest for efficacy as a lung cancer screening tool.
CT scans are proven to be more effective than chest x-rays, especially for detecting smaller anomalies in the lungs, rendering a much higher quality image.
The NLCST examined chest x-rays against LDCT in patients with a high risk of lung cancer to see if LDCT improved outlook.
50,000 participants between the ages of 55 and 74 joined the trial. All participants were smokers or had quit smoking and were in good health.
To qualify, subjects required a 30 pack-year history of smoking cigarettes (30 pack-year signifying: “smoked a pack every day for 30 years” but may also signify: “2 packs daily for 15 years”).
Subjects underwent one of either 3 chest x-rays or 3 LDCTs every year, as part of the multi-year trial.
As the trial moved forward, it was discovered that subjects screened with LDCT were 20% less likely to die of lung cancer than those who underwent chest x-rays, establishing LDCT’s diagnostic superiority.
American Cancer Society guidelines
The ACS’s guidelines counsel yearly lung cancer screening for patients between the ages of 55 and 74, who meet the following criteria:
- Currently smoke cigarettes or quit doing so in the past 15 years
- 30-pack year smoking history
- Are trying to quit smoking currently
- Are aware of limitations of LDCT and the risks associated
- Have access to screening at a clinic proficient in the delivery of lung cancer screening and treatments, as therapy proceeds
Lung cancer Alamogordo
X-Ray Associates of Alamogordo is home to renowned experts in the delivery of diagnostic radiology services. We support patients at 6 clinics all over the state.
XRANM uses only state-of-the-art technologies, deploying the most advanced diagnostics currently available.
We’re here to serve you, so we offer care that centers your needs, which includes our same-day diagnostic service.
We know you need answers as quickly as possible.
Lung cancer screening and other diagnostics are available at our clinics, using the most leading-edge equipment.
For more than 65 years, XRANM HAS been serving New Mexico with exceptional, patient-centered care.