DETROIT — The Barbara Ann Karmanos Cancer Center is launching a Lung Cancer Screening Program for adults with a history of smoking — both current and former smokers. The goal of the program is to help detect lung cancer early with the help of low-dose CT scans. Karmanos is able to offer the lung cancer screening for the reduced cost of $100, thanks to the generous support of the Gianni Ferrarotti Lung Cancer Foundation which is partially underwriting the expense.
The National Lung Screening Trial, a study of over 50,000 current or former heavy smokers conducted by the National Institutes of Health, showed that screening using three annual CT scans can reduce the number of deaths from lung cancer. Studies show that, among high-risk adults, early detection of lung cancer through screening with a CT scan rather than a chest X-ray can reduce cancer death by 20 percent and overall death rate by seven percent.
“The findings from this national study are significant, which is why we want to provide this lung cancer screening here at Karmanos,” said Dr. Shirish Gadgeel, leader of the thoracic multidisciplinary team at the Karmanos Cancer Institute. He added, “The multidisciplinary Thoracic Oncology team at Karmanos, consisting of experts focused only on lung cancer, is uniquely qualified to implement this important screening program. This screening test is an opportunity to dramatically change the lung cancer mortality rate for those who have a long history of smoking.”
Founded in 2004, the Gianni Ferrarotti Lung Cancer Foundation is dedicated to increasing lung cancer awareness and supporting research that will lead to early detection and better treatment options. The foundation has raised more than $70,000 for the Gianni Ferrarotti Lung Cancer Research Fund at Karmanos and has also provided monetary support to numerous families who are in financial need, due to the impact of lung cancer.
Lung cancer is one of the deadliest types of cancer and accounts for more deaths than any other cancer in both men and women. It’s estimated that more than 159,400 people will die of lung cancer in the United States this year alone, representing about 27 percent of all cancer deaths. Any opportunity to help prevent this disease or detect it early through screening can result in less extensive treatment and better outcomes, and may help reduce mortality rates.