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Defining Eligibility and Providing Counseling Key for Lung Cancer Screening Programs

Vijayalakshmi Iyer, PhD, and Erin Burns, PhD
Published: Thursday, May 02, 2019
Peter J. Mazzone MD, MPH

Peter J. Mazzone MD, MPH

Setting up a lung cancer screening (LCS) program can be a challenge in a multitude of ways. Through detailing past programs and discussing how they've each addressed their own challenges, the American Thoracic Society and the American Lung Association's new LCS guide1 can help clinicians design, implement, conduct, and streamline lung cancer screening (LCS) programs, Peter J. Mazzone, MD, MPH, of Cleveland Clinic in Ohio, and author on the guidelines, said in an interview with MD Magazine®.

The CMS and the US Preventive Services Task Force suggest yearly screenings for individuals who are at risk of lung cancer and provide the necessary eligibility recommendations, such as upper age bracket and smoking history. When determining whom to screen, program steering committees consider eligibility criteria and provide the following considerations:
  • Additional evaluation prior to denying screening to patients who are medically inoperable
  • A 5-year disease-free cutoff period before screening patients with prior malignancy
  • A 12-month waiting period before enrollment of an individual who had a recent diagnostic chest computed tomography (CT) scan
  • Delayed screening for patients presenting with respiratory symptoms prior to scheduled testing until their symptoms resolve
Establishing Screening Systems
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