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USPSTF lowers age, expands access to lung cancer screening

by John R. Fischer, Senior Reporter | March 10, 2021
CT X-Ray

While some physicians welcome the new guidelines, some are cautious, due to their not addressing risk factors beyond smoking, and because low-dose CT is known to produce false positives, which can lead to unnecessary testing. Another challenge to address is the implementation of lung cancer screenings into everyday practice.

“Research on implementation strategies are needed. For example, improving patient and provider knowledge and using reminders of eligible patients in the electronic medical record could increase the utilization of CT screening. Implementation of these practices is likely to reduce mortality related to lung cancer,” Dr. Robert Van Haren, assistant professor of surgery at the University of Cincinnati and a UC Health thoracic surgeon, told HCB News.

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The best way of reducing the risk of death from lung cancer is to quit smoking and to stay smoke free afterward, according to the Task Force.

The final recommendation statement and corresponding evidence summary and modeling studies were published online in the Journal of the American Medical Association and on the Task Force website.

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