Journal scan

Smokers more likely to quit after CT scan

Smokers who undergo a CT scan of their lungs are more likely to quit than those who do not, a study suggests, with screening providing a chance to get smoking cessation support.

Smokers who undergo a CT scan of their lungs are more likely to quit than those who do not, a study suggests, with screening providing a chance to get smoking cessation support

ct
A CT scan can give smokers a chance to get support at a time when they
are receptive to offers of help. Picture: Science Photo Library

Smokers who undergo a computed tomography (CT) scan of their lungs are more likely to quit than those who do not, a study suggests.

Scientists said the findings of the study, which looked at the effect of CT screening on smokers seen as high risk of developing lung cancer, disputed the belief that a negative screening result offers a 'licence to smoke'.

13%

Lung cancer accounts for 13% of all new cancer cases in the UK.

Source: Cancer Research UK

They suggested that engaging with lung screening can give smokers an opportunity to access smoking cessation support, at a time when they are likely to be more receptive to offers of help.

The trial, led by researchers at Cardiff University working with the University of Liverpool, King's College London and Queen Mary University of London, involved 4,055 participants aged 50 to 75.

The group was split into those who underwent low-dose CT screening for early detection of lung cancer and a control group who did not undergo screening.

Of the smokers who were screened, 10% successfully quit after two weeks, and 15% quit at two years – both higher than rates in the control group.


Brain, K et al (2017). Impact of low-dose CT screening on smoking cessation among high-risk participants in the UK Lung Cancer Screening Trial. Thorax. doi: 10.1136/thoraxjnl-2016-209690

 

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