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Study Concludes Smokers and Former Smokers Should Be Screened Study Concludes Smokers and Former Smokers Should Be Screened

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  #1  
Unread 02-14-2006, 06:27 AM
Study Concludes Smokers and Former Smokers Should Be Screened

Hi, All,

A study just released concluded that both current and former smokers should be screened for lung cancer. The news release states that former smokers remain at high risk for lung cancer for 20 to 30 years after they quit smoking and should consider annual CT screening.

Here's the link:

http://www.cancerfacts.com/Home_News...=4&NewsId=1970

I recall that one HysterSister went for CT testing ordered by her physician due to her endometrial cancer history. Coincidentally, the CT picked up an early-stage lung cancer for which she was successfully treated.

According to the American Cancer Society, lung cancer kills more people each year than breast, prostate and colon cancers combined. However, it has a high cure rate if found at stage 1, which unfortunately rarely happens.

If you are a current or former smoker, I would recommend discussing this issue with your physician. I quit smoking almost 35 years ago, but will talk to my doctor about this study when I see him in early April.

MoeKay
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  #2  
Unread 02-14-2006, 10:29 PM
Study Concludes Smokers and Former Smokers Should Be Screened

MoeKay,

I cannot agree with you more! My mom smoked for 33 years, having quit 21 years ago. This past October she was diagnosed with lung cancer which was an incidental finding on chest x-ray, followed by CT, biopsy, PET, surgery, complications and now chemo. She is stage 2A, and I shudder to think what would have been had she not had that chest x-ray this fall.

The doctors do not seem too eager to order CTs unless there is a real problem. My dad who smoked for a comparable amount of time requested screening and just had a chest x-ray. My brother and I have roughly 30 years of exposure to smoke, again only chest x-rays were done. At that I had to coax my doctor to order the x-ray.

I feel like doing a chest x-ray rather than CT scan as screening is almost like screening for breast cancer by doing a mammogram on only one breast rather than both.
  #3  
Unread 02-15-2006, 12:10 AM
Study Concludes Smokers and Former Smokers Should Be Screened

Dear Sisters - I do not have the article to reference, but I read that people who grew up with second hand smoke are more than 25% more likely (than people I guess who grew up in a glass bubble) to develop lung cancer later in life. I have a strong feeling that we should be really mindful of any poisons we introduce into the world and into ourselves. Unfortunately, it's often the case that we learn about the harmful effects of a poison after an ugly pattern emerges. I've become a fan of organically grown food.
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  #4  
Unread 02-15-2006, 05:47 AM
Study Concludes Smokers and Former Smokers Should Be Screened

Thanks - because the lung is one of the places cervical cancer can show up if it runs amok, those of us who smoke or smoked (I smoked for 25 years; quit 10 years ago)must be extra diligent. I just had a check-up (NED + me are buddies) and asked about a chest xray (next time) but I'll push the CT. Even though I hate the thought of more radiation (my body's had enough of that!), my husband's aunt died of lung cancer this past year, and her smoking history was similar to mine. Sigh! Some of the decisions we have to make are d--ned if you do; d--ned if you don't kind of decisions! Sigh! Take care,
  #5  
Unread 02-15-2006, 07:34 AM
Study Concludes Smokers and Former Smokers Should Be Screened

The risk of lung cancer continues for decades.
Sometimes I worry that this will discourage long time smokers from quitting.
Let's also point out that the benefit to the vascular system is immediate, decreasing your risk of stroke or heart attack, and stopping the progression of chronic lung disease.

oxox karenann
  #6  
Unread 02-15-2006, 03:03 PM
Study Concludes Smokers and Former Smokers Should Be Screened

I agree, Karenann. I am trying to get DH and DS to quit smoking, and one of their arguments is that the damage is already done. Studies need to focus more on the positive aspects of quitting.

Jeannie
  #7  
Unread 02-15-2006, 05:12 PM
Benefits of Quitting Smoking

Jeannie,

In response to your post above, I just googled "benefits" and "quitting smoking" and I retrieved 584,000 hits. You might want to suggest that your DH and DS try the googling approach so that they can read about the positive aspects of quitting. It's JMHO, but I don't think that we need more studies focusing on this issue, as the benefits of quitting smoking have been well-established for decades now.

I have heard many people over the years say that the damage is already done as a way to justify their decision to continue smoking. I view this as the psychological defense mechanism of rationalization hard at work. The decision to kick one of the most addictive habits there is often does not come easily. As a former smoker myself, I'm not only talking the talk, I walked the walk. However, I think one would be hard-pressed to say that there is not a wealth of information already out there about the benefits of quitting smoking.

If DH and DS are not into googling, however, here's a sampling of one of the hundreds of thousands of articles about the positive aspects of quitting smoking:

http://www.cancer.org/docroot/PED/co...ng_Smoking.asp

It states that the benefits begin after 20 seconds, with a lowering of the heart rate.

While the risk of developing lung cancer after quitting smoking does significantly decrease over the years, my purpose in posting about this study was to make sure women were aware that their risk will never completely return to what it was if they had never smoked. If these former smokers are aware that getting a CT once a year might save their lives, then I think that knowing this fact was a valuable piece of information.

I truly hope that your DH and DS are successful in their attempt to kick the habit!

Best regards,

MoeKay
  #8  
Unread 02-15-2006, 10:37 PM
Study Concludes Smokers and Former Smokers Should Be Screened

MoeKay,
Thanks for the great info. I am the sister with the early stage Lung ca. that was found during my CT check for endometrial ca. last yr. I am grateful for that incidental find . I am going in on the 28th of this month for my 1 yr check on the lung and my 3 yr. check on the EC.
Any thoughts and prayers would be greatly appreciated. I'm trying to keep "cancerhead" outta my head !!
I want to offer my heartfelt thanks and gratitude for all the time you spend advocating on all of our behalf and the well reasearched and timely information you share with us all.
My warmest regards and blessings,
Kathy
  #9  
Unread 02-16-2006, 04:28 PM
Study Concludes Smokers and Former Smokers Should Be Screened

Hello, Ellen,

I am so glad to hear that your mother's lung cancer was diagnosed early through an incidental finding on a chest x-ray! It's my hope that when former smokers go to their doctors armed with this study, their doctors will be more inclined to listen when they request CT scans such as you, your brother and father have done.

I have heard repeatedly that doctors frequently end up prescribing all sorts of unnecessary tests because they are concerned about medical liability issues, but frankly, for the most part, I don't see this happening.

Hello, Kathy,

It's so good to hear from you again! I think of you often and I always remember that you're a beautiful person from Oregon, the most beautiful state in the country--and I've also been to both Hawaii and Alaska, which are also up there on my list of great states, but definitely not above your home state. I am so happy you are doing well and will certainly keep you in my thoughts and prayers as you go through your upcoming appointments.

I would suspect that you are a wonderful advocate not only for endometrial cancer issues but also for lung cancer too!!

Wishing you much health and happiness.

MoeKay
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