Lung cancer screening with low-dose computed tomography: Canadian experience.
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INTRODUCTION: In 2003, the Department of Medical Imaging at the University Health Network in Toronto, Ontario, became the first Canadian site of the Intemational Early Lung Cancer Action Program (I-ELCAP). We report the results from the first 1000 baseline studies. METHODS: Between June 2003 and December 2005, we enrolled 1000 high-risk smokers (that is, smokers with a history of at least 10 pack years, or the equivalent of one pack daily for 10 years), aged 55 years or older. A low-dose helical computed tomography (CT) (40 to 60 mA, 120 kV) was performed with 1.0 mm to 1.25 mm collimation. Nodules found at baseline were followed according to the I-ELCAP protocol: (1) no noncalcified nodules (NCNs) or NCNs < or =4 mm or nonsolid nodules < 8 mm, annual repeat; (2) NCNs > or =5 mm or nonsolid nodules > or =8 mm, 3-month follow-up; or (3) nonsolid nodules > or =15 mm, antibiotics and 1-month follow-up. RESULTS: The first 1000 study participants were aged 63 years, standard deviation (SD) 6 years, with a smoking history of 38 pack years, SD 22 pack years; 662 (66%) were former smokers, and 338 (34%) were current smokers; 453 (45%) were men, and 547 (55%) were women. Of the participants, 256 (26%) had a positive baseline low-dose computed tomography (LDCT) scan; 227 (23%) were followed after 3 months and 16 (1.6%) after 1 month; 7 (0.7%) received a contrast-enhanced CT and 6 (0.6%) an immediate CT-guided biopsy. Twenty-six invasive procedures were performed: 22 CT-guided biopsies, 1 ultrasound-guided lymph node metastasis biopsy, 1 bronchoscopic biopsy, and 2 surgeries. The malignancy rate of the invasive procedures was 85%. Overall, the malignancy prevalence is 2.2%. Of the malignancies, 20 are lung carcinomas: 19 non-small-cell lung carcinomas (NSCLCs) (14 adenocarcinoma or bronchioalveolar carcinoma [BAC], 4 squamous carcinoma, and 1 large-cell carcinoma) and 1 small-cell carcinoma; 15 (78%) of the NSCLCs are Stage I. Fourteen patients underwent surgery (1 pneumonectomy, 9 lobectomies, and 4 segmentectomies). CONCLUSION: Our results confirm that LDCT identifies small, early-stage, resectable lung cancer in a high-risk population.
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