Projects of the Unit of Fundamentals of Cancer Prevention

Spiral CT Scanning for the early detection of lung cancer LUSI

(under construction)


Every year 35 000 – 40 000 people in Germany die from lung cancer and approximately 40 000 – 45 000 people are newly diagnosed with the disease. Unfortunately, only 10 – 15% of those diagnosed with lung cancer do not die of the disease, though the 5-year-survival is dependent upon stage of diagnosis. Up to 70% of those diagnosed and confirmed to have stage Ia-disease will survive 5 years. Early detection of lung cancer theoretically should improve the outcome of the disease.
Recently, evidence has occurred from uncontrolled studies in Japan and the United States that low-dose helical (spiral) computerised tomography of the lung is capable of detecting approximately four times as many small stage I lung cancers and chest x-rays, and that these appear likely to have a good prognosis. A large-scale randomised controlled screening trial of spiral CT-scanning in Germany has been proposed. The principal aim of the study is to seek new approaches that will reduce the morbidity and mortality from lung cancer. Specifically, it shall evaluate the role of annual low-dose spiral CT-scanning in the detection of and reduction in mortality from lung cancer in comparison with annual chest x-ray-screening. The trial will also provide the opportunity to evaluate other preventive prognostic and therapeutic approaches to lung cancer.

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