The purpose of screening is early diagnosis and treatment. Screening tests are administered to people without current symptoms, but who may be at high risk for certain diseases or conditions.
Though some vary slightly, most professional guidelines recommend that you and your doctor discuss the risks and benefits of lung cancer screening if you:
Screening is done with a low-dose CT scan. A CT scan is a series of x-rays put together by a computer to create images of the lungs.
Screening tests results may come back as normal when lung cancer is actually present, but undetected. This is called a false-negative. Results can also show a lung lesion that is not cancerous such as a nodule. This is called a false-positive.
Can lung cancer be found early? American Cancer Society website. Available at: https://www.cancer.org/cancer/lung-cancer/prevention-and-early-detection/early-detection.html. Updated February 22, 2017. Accessed August 30, 2017.
Lung cancer screening. National Cancer Institute website. Available at: https://www.cancer.gov/types/lung/patient/lung-screening-pdq. Updated June 16, 2017. Accessed August 30, 2017.
Lung cancer screening. EBSCO DynaMed Plus website. Available at: http://www.dynamed.com/topics/dmp~AN~T901808/Lung-cancer-screening. Updated August 11, 2017. Accessed August 30, 2017.
What do I need to know about lung cancer screening? American Lung Association website. Available at: http://www.lung.org/lung-health-and-diseases/lung-disease-lookup/lung-cancer/learn-about-lung-cancer/lung-cancer-screening. Updated November 3, 2016. Accessed July 26, 2016.
10/1/2013 DynaMed Plus Systematic Literature Surveillance http://www.dynamed.com/topics/dmp~AN~T901808/Lung-cancer-screening: Manser R, Lethaby A, Irving LB,et al. Screening for lung cancer. Cochrane Database Syst Rev. 2013;(6):CD001991.
Last reviewed August 2017 by EBSCO Medical Review Board Michael Woods, MD, FAAP
Please be aware that this information is provided to supplement the care provided by your physician. It is neither intended nor implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice. CALL YOUR HEALTHCARE PROVIDER IMMEDIATELY IF YOU THINK YOU MAY HAVE A MEDICAL EMERGENCY. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider prior to starting any new treatment or with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition.