The National Cancer Institute (NCI) released initial results from a large-scale test of screening methods to reduce deaths from lung cancer by detecting cancers at relatively early stages.

The National Lung Screening Trial (NLST), a randomized national trial involving more than 53,000 current and former heavy smokers ages 55 to 74, compared the effects of two screening procedures for lung cancer low-dose helical computed tomography (CT) and standard chest X-ray on lung cancer mortality and found 20 percent fewer lung cancer deaths among trial participants screened with low-dose helical CT.  The NLST was sponsored by NCI, a part of the National Institutes of Health, and conducted by the American College of Radiology Imaging Network (ACRIN) and the Lung Screening Study group.  A paper describing the design and protocol of the NLST, “The National Lung Screening Trial: Overview and Study Design” by the NLST research team, was published yesterday by the journal Radiology and is openly available at

“This large and well-designed study used rigorous scientific methods to test ways to prevent death from lung cancer by screening patients at especially high risk,” said Harold Varmus, M.D., NCI Director.  “Lung cancer is the leading cause of cancer mortality in the U.S. and throughout the world, so a validated approach that can reduce lung cancer mortality by even 20 percent has the potential to spare very significant numbers of people from the ravages of this disease.  But these findings should in no way distract us from continued efforts to curtail the use of tobacco, which will remain the major causative factor for lung cancer and several other diseases.”

For the full press release from the NCI please click here.


For a press release from CIBR member Lung Cancer Alliance please click here.

For a press release from CIBR member National Lung Cancer Partnership please click here.


For a Fact Sheet on the NLST, please click here.

For more information on lung cancer and screening, please click here.

“The National Lung Screening Trial: Overview and Study Design” has been published by Radiology. This paper is openly available at

By |2010-11-04T18:34:50-04:00November 4th, 2010|advocacy news, member news, Patient Resources|Comments Off on CT Scans Shown to Reduce Lung Cancer Deaths
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