A lung cancer screening program has revealed that routine chest X-rays may serve to identify lung cancer incidents in their early stages. As many as 172,000 Americans are expected to be diagnosed with lung cancer, and most of them are not expected to survive, as this disease is invariably detected late.
Earlier studies showed that screening did not reveal the more dangerous tumors, or patients were put through risky surgery as a result of tumors that are slow growing. A government sponsored study is putting X-rays to the test again.
As many as 77,000 people were screened, and the researchers spotted suspicious signs in 9% of them, according to the National Cancer Institute. The final lung cancer cases amounted to only 126 people. What is of more importance is that 44% of the disease detected were in the early stages. There were also several false alarms during the screening process which also gave rise to considerable anxiety. A biopsy may also result in a collapsed lung sometimes. The chief aim of the study is to ascertain if early detection can really lead to lives being saved. The adenocarcinoma tumors are easily detected by X-rays.