Brock researchers unveil lung cancer screening app
Canadian researchers have developed a software app that they hope will improve lung cancer screening around the world.
The risk-calculating software can predict with a high level of accuracy whether lesions, or nodules, in the lungs detected on a CT scan are likely to be malignant or benign.
That can help doctors determine whether a patient at high risk for lung cancer is likely to need an invasive biopsy or surgery, said co-principal investigator Dr. Stephen Lam, chair of the Provincial Lung Tumour Group at the B.C. Cancer Agency.
``We already know that CT screening saves lives,'' said Lam.
``Now we have evidence that our model and risk calculator can accurately predict which abnormalities that show up on a first CT require further followup ... and which ones do not.''
The software was developed by Martin Tammemagi, an epidemiologist at Brock University in St. Catharines, Ont., and a member of the cross-Canada research team whose findings from two studies are reported in this week's issue of the New England Journal of Medicine.
``One of the goals of the model is to help reduce the number of needless tests,'' Tammemagi said in a statement. ``When we can identify with accuracy that a person's nodule has low probability for lung cancer, then they'll receive followups that include fewer CT screens, less biopsies and less surgery.