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Lung Cancer Screening: Finding the Right Detection Method for You


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1/23/2011
Jeffrey H. Dover
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Lung cancer screening methods typically are unreliable. In fact, there have been no approved screening techniques for lung and bronchus cancer to date that are shown to effectively reduce mortality rates associated with the disease.

Many screening methods can provide false results or be misinterpreted, leading to cases in which someone who actually has cancer is believed to be cancer-free, or in other cases, someone without the disease is led to believe that they have it.

While there haven’t even been any screening techniques proven to be reliable for those who are at high risk of developing lung cancer, there are several methods in use today.

According to the American Cancer Society, some of the more prominent lung cancer screening techniques are:

• Chest x-rays
• Helical CT scans
• Sputum analysis for abnormal cells
• Fiber-optic examination of the bronchial tubes

Chest x-rays

This method of lung cancer screening is much like an x-ray for a broken bone; the image of the inside of the body can be used to detect any abnormal growths on the lungs. Unfortunately, this is one of the many methods proven to be ineffective against reducing mortality rates in lung cancer victims.

Helical CT scans (Spiral Computed Tomography)

Much like a CAT scan, this technique utilizes many different x-ray images to construct a two-dimensional image of the area of the body in question – the lungs in this scenario. The helical version of this method of screening is a newer, more accurate technology, but has yet to be officially approved as a technique which can effectively save lives.

Sputum analysis

This form of lung cancer screening is fairly straightforward. Cells taken from phlegm or mucus coughed up from the lungs are examined under a microscopic lens for any abnormal cells, which may be cancerous. Again, this method has been proven to be ineffective in reducing the rate of mortality in lung cancer cases.

Fiber-optic bronchoscopy

For this form of lung cancer screening, a tiny, fiber-optic camera is used to examine the bronchial passages to check for any cancer-related abnormalities. Besides the fact that this technique hasn’t been proven to effectively reduce the rates of death, patients with heart conditions or trouble breathing may have difficulty undergoing the test without incident.

If you or a loved one has been diagnosed with lung cancer in Georgia and feel it was discovered late due to an error by your doctor or medical professional, please request a copy of our free book, I Have Cancer…Should It Have Been Caught Earlier?, and call an experienced Atlanta medical malpractice and lung cancer lawyer at the Dover Law Firm at 770-518-1133 to schedule a free consultation to discuss your situation.


Category: Failure to Diagnose Cancer


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