According to the research paper published in the Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA) Oncology, some current and former older smokers who are not recommended for screening are at high risk of lung cancer. The findings from the researchers at Washington DC Veterans Affairs Medical Center indicate a need for prediction models to identify high-risk subsets of older smokers for screening.
Charles Faselis, MD, chief of staff at Veterans Affairs Medical Center and professor of medicine at George Washington University and Uniformed Services University collected data from the Cardiovascular Health Study to determine lung cancer risk among 4279 older smokers for whom low-dose CT scan is not recommended. He said, “The findings of our study provide new information about the risk of lung cancer in subsets of smokers who are considered low risk or free of risk of lung cancer, and are not currently recommended for lung cancer screening.” “Results of this research are important for Veterans because smoking is twice as common among Veterans as in the civilian population, which places them at a greater risk of lung cancer. Smoking is the single largest preventable cause of lung cancer, the leading cause of cancer death in the United States,” he adds.
The findings of this cohort study are that there is high risk of lung cancer among smokers for whom LDCT screening is not recommended. They suggest that prediction models are needed for identification of high-risk subsets of these smokers so that screening can be done. The remarkable high risk of lung cancer along with many other harmful health effects of smoking reiterates the importance of early cessation.
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