A novel predictive risk model more effectively identified patients at risk of developing lung cancer than other previously established models, according to a study published in The Lancet Oncology.

Although the current methodologies for early detection of lung cancer — including models such as the National Lung Screening Trial (NLST) — have been effective in decreasing mortality, many patients with eventually diagnosed lung cancer do not meet the established criteria for screening entry.

In the prospective Pan-Canadian Early Detection of Lung Cancer (PanCan) study, investigators recruited 2537 patients who were current or former smokers (ever-smokers) and who did not have a self-reported history of lung cancer. Eligible study patients must have had a 2% 6-year risk of lung cancer as estimated by the PanCan model.

The incidence of lung cancer was significantly greater among patients who were screened during the PanCan study (6.5%) compared to patients observed in the NLST (4.0%) (P <.0001).

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At the time of median follow-up of 5.5 years, 172 lung cancers were diagnosed in 164 screened patients, resulting in a cumulative incidence of 0.065 (95% CI, .055-.075) and an incidence rate of 138.1 per 10,000 person years.