The United States Preventive Services Task Force (USPSTF) has issued an updated recommendation statement on screening for lung cancer. The USPSTF has modified the age range and smoking history recommended for screening.
The USPSTF now recommends annual screening for lung cancer with low-dose computed tomography (LDCT) in adults aged 50 to 80 years who have a 20 pack-year smoking history and currently smoke or have quit within the past 15 years. Screening should be discontinued once a person has not smoked for 15 years or develops a health problem that substantially limits life expectancy or the ability or willingness to have curative lung surgery.
This recommendation replaces the 2013 USPSTF recommendation on screening for lung cancer, which recommended annual screening for lung cancer with LDCT in adults aged 55 to 80 years who have a 30 pack-year smoking history and currently smoke or have quit within the past 15 years.
Lung cancer is the second most common cancer and the leading cause of cancer death in the U.S. In 2020, an estimated 228,820 persons were diagnosed with lung cancer, and 135,720 persons died of the disease. The most important risk factor for lung cancer is smoking. Increasing age is also a risk factor; the median age of diagnosis of lung cancer is 70 years. Lung cancer has a generally poor prognosis, with an overall 5-year survival rate of 20.5%. However, early-stage lung cancer has a better prognosis and is more amenable to treatment.
United States Preventive Services Task Force (USPSTF). Final Recommendation Statement. Lung Cancer: Screening. March 9, 2021. Available at: click here. Accessed March 10, 2021.