Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

UT MD Anderson debuts lung cancer screening program

30.06.2011
Experts mobilize after national clinical trial shows CT scanning reduces deaths by 20 percent

Current and former heavy smokers can now be screened more effectively for lung cancer. Results from the National Lung Screening Trial (NLST) revealed that detecting small lung cancers with computed tomography (CT) reduces lung cancer specific mortality by 20 percent.

Prior to the trial, lung cancer, often diagnosed in the later stages of the disease, had shown no benefit from screening because screening with standard chest X-rays did not detect cancers early enough. The trial, funded by the National Cancer Institute (NCI), is the driving force behind a new program offered at The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center.

MD Anderson's Lung Cancer Screening Program teams experts in thoracic surgery, radiology, pulmonary and clinical cancer prevention who have developed a step-by-step program to better detect, treat and educate high-risk individuals against lung cancer.

"Our program is unique because we do more than a comprehensive lung CT screening exam," said Therese Bevers, M.D., medical director of MD Anderson's Cancer Prevention Center. "We offer preventive options to help reduce their risk for cancer. Based on the findings from the screening lung CT, we guide people through the diagnostic evaluation and, if needed, treatment."

MD Anderson is offering screening to current or former smokers 50 years of age or older who have smoked the equivalent of one pack of cigarettes a day for at least 20 years. In addition to screening, the program offers access to other services through the Cancer Prevention Center, including risk assessment counseling for those found to not have lung cancer and low-cost tobacco cessation programs to help smokers quit.

MD Anderson's program is based on initial findings reported last fall from the NLST. The findings, scheduled to be published in the June 29 New England Journal of Medicine, revealed a 20 percent reduction in lung cancer deaths for participants who received the low-dose helical CT scan compared with those undergoing a standard chest X-ray.

Clinical Trial Results Add Weight

MD Anderson was one of 33 sites involved in the national trial and one of 10 sites that collected biomarkers to use in NLST secondary trials. More than 780 MD Anderson participants were enrolled in the trial. The trial randomized 53,000 current or former smokers - ages 55 to 74 - into two screening groups to compare and examine lung cancer mortality.

"This is a major finding for lung cancer patients and health care policy in the United States," said Reginald Munden, M.D., a professor in Department of Diagnostic Radiology and lead investigator at MD Anderson on the trial. "The goal of our lung cancer screening program is to improve the health of lung cancer patients."

Munden hopes the trial results will pique the interest of current smokers to join a smoking-cessation program. Because many former smokers are at a high risk for developing lung cancer, MD Anderson hopes to draw that population to the screening program as well. "We had a tremendous amount of interest in the trial when it first opened, and we anticipate there will be more people asking to be screened with the release of the trial findings," said Munden.

The Costs of Saving Lives

As promising as the findings are, not all smokers and former smokers are recommended for lung cancer screening. There are certain risks associated with screening, including radiation exposure and false positives that may require additional testing and discomfort.

"Now that we have scientific proof that screening a specific high-risk group can reduce mortality in lung cancer patients, the benefits of the screening outweigh the risks for those people," said Bevers, who was MD Anderson co-investigator on the national trial.

Cost can be a barrier to screening, because insurance companies do not cover the expense of lung cancer screening. Previous studies did not prove a benefit to X-ray screening. With the challenging economy and rising costs of medical care, the out-of pocket expense may deter some from getting screened, and the screening results could lead to further tests that may involve additional costs.

MD Anderson is charging $400 for a lung cancer screening, but experts consider this worth it if it will reduce the number of lung cancer deaths. "There are more costs associated with treating lung cancer," said Munden.

The trial also includes a cost-effective analysis. Researchers are comparing the cost of lung cancer care to the cost of covering lung cancer screening. "If the analysis demonstrates a reduction in the cost of lung cancer care, then the adaptation will be rapid," said Munden.

Results from the cost analysis are expected to be released later this year.

For more information about lung cancer screening, please visit the Cancer Prevention Center website.

To schedule an appointment, please contact askMDAnderson at 1-877-MDA-6789.

About MD Anderson

The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center in Houston ranks as one of the world's most respected centers focused on cancer patient care, research, education and prevention. MD Anderson is one of only 40 comprehensive cancer centers designated by the National Cancer Institute. For seven of the past nine years, including 2010, MD Anderson has ranked No. 1 in cancer care in "America's Best Hospitals," a survey published annually in U.S. News & World Report.

Katrina R. Burton | EurekAlert!
Further information:
http://www.mdanderson.org

More articles from Studies and Analyses:

nachricht The personality factor: How to foster the sharing of research data
06.09.2017 | ZBW – Leibniz-Informationszentrum Wirtschaft

nachricht Europe’s Demographic Future. Where the Regions Are Heading after a Decade of Crises
10.08.2017 | Berlin-Institut für Bevölkerung und Entwicklung

All articles from Studies and Analyses >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: The pyrenoid is a carbon-fixing liquid droplet

Plants and algae use the enzyme Rubisco to fix carbon dioxide, removing it from the atmosphere and converting it into biomass. Algae have figured out a way to increase the efficiency of carbon fixation. They gather most of their Rubisco into a ball-shaped microcompartment called the pyrenoid, which they flood with a high local concentration of carbon dioxide. A team of scientists at Princeton University, the Carnegie Institution for Science, Stanford University and the Max Plank Institute of Biochemistry have unravelled the mysteries of how the pyrenoid is assembled. These insights can help to engineer crops that remove more carbon dioxide from the atmosphere while producing more food.

A warming planet

Im Focus: Highly precise wiring in the Cerebral Cortex

Our brains house extremely complex neuronal circuits, whose detailed structures are still largely unknown. This is especially true for the so-called cerebral cortex of mammals, where among other things vision, thoughts or spatial orientation are being computed. Here the rules by which nerve cells are connected to each other are only partly understood. A team of scientists around Moritz Helmstaedter at the Frankfiurt Max Planck Institute for Brain Research and Helene Schmidt (Humboldt University in Berlin) have now discovered a surprisingly precise nerve cell connectivity pattern in the part of the cerebral cortex that is responsible for orienting the individual animal or human in space.

The researchers report online in Nature (Schmidt et al., 2017. Axonal synapse sorting in medial entorhinal cortex, DOI: 10.1038/nature24005) that synapses in...

Im Focus: Tiny lasers from a gallery of whispers

New technique promises tunable laser devices

Whispering gallery mode (WGM) resonators are used to make tiny micro-lasers, sensors, switches, routers and other devices. These tiny structures rely on a...

Im Focus: Ultrafast snapshots of relaxing electrons in solids

Using ultrafast flashes of laser and x-ray radiation, scientists at the Max Planck Institute of Quantum Optics (Garching, Germany) took snapshots of the briefest electron motion inside a solid material to date. The electron motion lasted only 750 billionths of the billionth of a second before it fainted, setting a new record of human capability to capture ultrafast processes inside solids!

When x-rays shine onto solid materials or large molecules, an electron is pushed away from its original place near the nucleus of the atom, leaving a hole...

Im Focus: Quantum Sensors Decipher Magnetic Ordering in a New Semiconducting Material

For the first time, physicists have successfully imaged spiral magnetic ordering in a multiferroic material. These materials are considered highly promising candidates for future data storage media. The researchers were able to prove their findings using unique quantum sensors that were developed at Basel University and that can analyze electromagnetic fields on the nanometer scale. The results – obtained by scientists from the University of Basel’s Department of Physics, the Swiss Nanoscience Institute, the University of Montpellier and several laboratories from University Paris-Saclay – were recently published in the journal Nature.

Multiferroics are materials that simultaneously react to electric and magnetic fields. These two properties are rarely found together, and their combined...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

“Lasers in Composites Symposium” in Aachen – from Science to Application

19.09.2017 | Event News

I-ESA 2018 – Call for Papers

12.09.2017 | Event News

EMBO at Basel Life, a new conference on current and emerging life science research

06.09.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

Rainbow colors reveal cell history: Uncovering β-cell heterogeneity

22.09.2017 | Life Sciences

Penn first in world to treat patient with new radiation technology

22.09.2017 | Medical Engineering

Calculating quietness

22.09.2017 | Physics and Astronomy

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>