At the ATS (American Thoracic Society) was held in San Diego the end of May. While referrals to Low Dose CT (LDCT) screening still remains very low, much discussion occurred around screening and are those who are appropriate being referred. Topics ranged from should physicians and patients adhere to the National Lung Screening Trial (NLST) data on selections of patients for LDCT screening or should other criteria be utilized, possibly a personalized data risk tools and biomarkers. Many discussions and sessions occurred on the appropriate patient selection; however, the underlying agreement is that shared decision making needs to occur.
Between LDCT screening and more hospitals having an incidental finding follow up program, several presentations were looking at retrospective characteristics of malignant versus benign nodules. Imaging biomarkers is a growing area. One hopeful poster was, the characteristics of pulmonary nodules after a resection once a screening program was implemented in a community setting. 89% were malignant lung cancer and 11% were benign lung disease.
Many new biopsy devices were on display and discussed within presentations along with many new interventional pulmonary diagnostic and potential treatment options. Included is one of our COE physicians, Dr. Krish Bhadra, CHI Memorial Hospital, Chattanooga, TN with his poster on Radiation Dose to Patients and Clinicians During Biopsy of Peripheral Pulmonary Lesions guided by LungVision.
Between new biopsy techniques, advances in pulmonary interventional procedures, biomarkers, and liquid biopsy testing, there is continued hope for early diagnosis and appropriate treatment.