Lung cancer is a disease that is usually detected in advanced stages, which is why, after five years of diagnosis, only about 10% of patients are still alive. However, a chest CT of low radiation allows detecting the presence of the tumor -when it is still in its initial phase- in 85% of cases.
A first international official guide recommends using thoracic CT as a screening test in people who are at high risk of developing lung cancer. This could save many lives, since it is estimated that each year more than one million people die worldwide due to this neoplasm.
A chest CT of low radiation allows detecting the presence of the tumor -when it is still in its initial phase- in 85% of the cases
A study - published by The New England Journal of Medicine - and involving more than 53,000 smokers demonstrated the efficacy of low-dose thoracic CT compared with traditional chest radiography, and thanks to this test it was possible to reduce deaths for lung cancer 20%.
Low-radiation CT is performed mostly in private centers because it is expensive, but if the cost-benefit of diagnosing lung cancer when it can still be easily cured is taken into account, the balance is positive, since the disease is detected in advanced stages implies a greater expense in the treatment - more expensive than in the initial stage -, which is also ineffective, because even with therapy most patients die before five years.