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Screening for early signs of lung cancer increases survival rates by 73 per cent

8 June 2016


A major lung cancer screening trial has found that patients with a high risk of developing lung cancer have a 73 per cent chance of living for five years or more if the disease is identified at an early stage.


The UK Lung Cancer Screening Trial (UKLS) was carried out by Royal Brompton & Harefield NHS Foundation Trust, the University of Liverpool, Liverpool Heart & Chest Hospital and Papworth Hospital.


Four thousand and fifty-five high-risk individuals aged 50 to 75 took part in the randomised controlled trial, which compared screening with computed tomography (CT) scans to existing care. All CT scans were reviewed at the Trust.


Dr Anand Devaraj, co-investigator on the UKLS trial and radiologist at Royal Brompton Hospital, said: “For this trial, selected participants were randomly split in to two groups: screening using CT and non-screening.


“Over two per cent of high-risk individuals in the screening group were diagnosed with lung cancer. Importantly, in over 80% of these cases, lung cancer was diagnosed at an early stage, which is crucial to improving  survival rates.”


The trial was funded by the National Institute for Health Research (NIHR) health technology assessment programme. The results of the trial will provide the UK National Screening Committee with evidence to make a decision on a national lung cancer screening programme.


Read the full report from the trial


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