Screening is recommended for current or former smokers ages 55-74 who have at least a 30-pack-year history and who currently smoke or have quit within the past 15 years.
A process of informed and shared decision making with a clinician related to the potential benefits, limitations and harms associated with screening for lung cancer with LDCT should occur before any decision is made to initiate lung cancer screening.
Smoking cessation counseling remains a high priority for clinical attention in discussions with current smokers, who should be informed of their continuing risk of lung cancer. Screening should not be viewed as an alternative to smoking cessation.
A video-assisted thoracoscopic surgery (VATS) may be done before or instead of a thoracotomy. This procedure involves inserting a long, thin tube (videoscope) with a camera attached and small surgical instruments into your chest through small cuts made between your ribs.
The VATS method may be used to:
- Confirm the diagnosis of lung cancer.
- Biopsy lymph nodes in the center part of your chest (mediastinum).
- Benign nodules can be removed by VATS
- Perform a wedge resection of your lung cancer. This removes the cancer and the lung tissue surrounding the cancer.
- Remove the segment (lobe) of the lung that contains the cancer, in some cases. Your lungs are divided into parts called lobes. Your right lung has three lobes, and your left lung has two lobes. Removing a lobe is called a lobectomy. Removal of an entirelung is called pneumonectomy, also performed by VATS techniques