Diagnosing early-stage lung cancer with low-dose computed tomography (CT) screening drastically improves the survival rate of cancer patients over a 20-year period, according to a large-scale international study being presented by Mount Sinai researchers at the annual meeting of the Radiological Society of North America.
The results show that patients diagnosed with lung cancer at an early stage via CT screening have a 20-year survival rate of 80 percent. The average five-year survival rate for all lung cancer patients is 18.6 percent because only 16 percent of lung cancers are diagnosed at an early stage. More than half of people with lung cancer die within one year of being diagnosed, making it the leading cause of cancer deaths. By the time symptoms appear, it is often too late.