USPSTF issues new recommendations on screening for lung cancer
The U.S. Preventive Services Task Force (USPSTF) recommends that annual lung cancer screenings for at-risk people should begin at 50 years of age, a change from the previously recommended age of 55.
USPSTF classifies people at high-risk if they have smoked at least 20 pack-years over their lifetime, and still smoke or have quit smoking within the last 15 years.
According to the USPSTF, the expanded screening criteria eligibility will potentially be helpful to African Americans and women, who typically smoke fewer cigarettes than white men, and are at an increased risk of lung cancer compared to white people.
“Some really good news from the changes to this recommendation is that it will mean more people are eligible for screening, including notably more African Americans and women,” says USPSTF member John B. Wong, MD, in a press release. “Making screening for lung cancer available to people who have smoked less over time will help doctors support the health—and potentially save the lives—of more of their African American and female patients.”
Read the full press release here.