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NLST: CT detects twice as many lung cancers as X-ray at initial screening exam
Date:5/22/2013

National Lung Screening Trial (NLST) investigators also conclude that the 20 percent reduction in lung cancer mortality with low-dose computed tomography (LDCT) versus chest X-ray (CXR) screening previously reported in the NLST primary paper is achievable at experienced screening centers in the United States.

Philadelphia, PAPhysicians have more information to share with their patients about the benefits and risks of LDCT lung cancer screening following today's publication in the New England Journal of Medicine of the results of the first (of three planned) annual screening examinations from the NLST. "For a cancer screening to work, it's important to verify that it can in fact discover cancers early. The analysis of NLST participants' initial annual screening examination provides evidence that the number of early-stage cancers detected in the trial's CT arm were significantly greater than the number detected in the chest X-ray arm," says Timothy Church, Ph.D., a biostatistician and professor in the School of Public Health at the University of Minnesota who has been involved with the NLST's design, implementation and analysis. Church also points out that a reduction in mortality is the ultimate indicator of a successful cancer screening strategy. The NLST is a large-scale, longitudinal clinical trial that randomized over 53,400 study participants equally into either the LDCT or standard CXR arm to evaluate whether lung cancer screening saves lives. Published results (NEJM; 2011) reported a 20 percent reduction in lung cancer deaths among study participants (all at high risk for the disease) screened with LDCT versus those screened with CXR.

The authors report that the NLST initial-screening results are reflective of other large trials with regard to positive LDCT versus CXR results, with more positive screening exams [7191 vs. 2387, respectively], more diagnostic procedures [6369 vs. 2176, respectively], more biopsies and other
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Contact: Shawn Farley
PR@acr.org
703-648-8936
American College of Radiology
Source:Eurekalert

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