Lung Cancer Screening: What are the Risks?
Dr. Juan Godinez highlights some of the risks of screening for lung cancer.
Decatur, TX – October 23, 2019 – Screening helps to look for cancer before symptoms start to show. When lung cancer is detected early, it becomes easy to treat. Doctors use various tests to determine if a patient has lung cancer and if present, how far it has spread. Some lung cancer screening tests are known to have risks.
“Screening tests help doctors to understand your type of cancer,” says Dr. Godinez. "This will aid in determining the right treatment option for your unique case. Screening tests are often given when you have no symptoms of cancer. Some screening tests for lung cancer have been found to reduce the risks of dying from the disease."
Here are some of the risks of screening for lung cancer:
- Chances of false negatives – Lung cancer screening test results can show you are healthy when actually you have lung cancer. This can delay treatment even when the patient has symptoms.
- Tests may not improve the health or survival rate of the patient – Screening for lung cancer may not help you live longer or improve your health especially if the disease has already spread. Some screening can lead to overdiagnosis and cause the patient to experience adverse side effects of treatment.
- Exposure to radiation – Chest x-rays and low dose CT scans can expose the patient to radiation and increase their risk of lung cancer.
- False-positive results – Screening for lung cancer can result in false-positive results where the test shows the presence of disease when there is none. This will cause the patient to undergo more tests like biopsies. A lung cancer biopsy can cause the collapse of part of the lung.
“Before taking any screening test, talk your doctor about the risks and your needs,” says Dr. Godinez. "Make sure you understand the benefits and harms that the screening tests will expose you to. It is vital that you be part of the decision making to understand the best screening method for your condition."
About North Texas Cancer Center at Wise
North Texas Cancer Center at Wise, a division of Choice Cancer Care, is now operating as the Cancer Center at Wise Regional and is one of the most renowned cancer treatment centers in Texas. The center unites some of the best cancer doctors and surgeons, medical oncologists and radiation oncologists. Our expert team delivers superior cancer treatment in Texas, with the best results available.
North Texas Cancer Center at Wise County
2010 S. Ben Merritt Drive, Ste A
Decatur, TX 76234