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Blacks more likely to diagnosed with late-stage lung cancer

Significantly more cases of early non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC) were caught following the introduction of low-dose CT lung cancer screening recommendations nearly a decade ago. But non-White patients did not share equally in the benefits.

Researchers analyzed the medical records of more than 760,000 patients between 2010 and 2018. “In 2018, for the first time ever, stage I disease was the predominant stage of NSCLC identified among non-Hispanic White patients,” Chi-Fu Jeffrey Yang, MD, of Massachusetts General Hospital and his colleagues reported.

“By contrast, stage IV disease remained the predominant stage of NSCLC diagnosed among non-white patients.”

“Researchers and policymakers must analyze not just how many people are being screened but also the ‘mismatch’ between who is screened and who bears the greatest burden of disease related to lung cancer,” wrote Anne Melzer, MD, of the University of Minnesota and Matthew Triplette, MD, of the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center in Seattle in editorial that accompanied the report. “Through such targeted interventions, screening can realize its full potential for everyone at high risk for lung cancer.”

See “USPSTF’s Lung Cancer Screening Recs Tied to Thousands Fewer Deaths — Study estimates over 10,000 deaths averted over 4-year period” by Mike Bassett on the MedPage Today website (April 4, 2022)

See the full text of the scientific paper “Association of computed tomography screening with lung cancer stage shift and survival in the United States: quasi-experimental study” by Alexandra L. Potter et al.