Lung cancer screening based on individual risk has the potential to save more lives than the current US Preventative Services Task Force (USPSTF) method.
The USPSTF recommends an annual lung cancer screening for people aged 55 to 80 who are current smokers or have quit within the past 15 years.
However, this may exclude those smokers with a higher risk of getting lung cancer who would have been selected for CT screening by individual risk calculators.
Research from the National Cancer Institute (NCI) found that using the Lung Cancer Risk Assessment Tool would draw in some high-risk moderate smokers who aren’t eligible for screening using the USPSTF criteria.
If this other method was used, more than 5,000 deaths could have been prevented in 2015, according to NCI researchers.
Among the biggest problems with risk-based screening, however, are the cost, efficiency and overall quality of life-years gained.