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Does a lung cancer screening programme promote smoking cessation?
  1. Filippo Lococo1,
  2. Giuseppe Cardillo2,
  3. Giulia Veronesi3
  1. 1Unit of Thoracic Surgery, Arcispedale Santa Maria Nuova-IRCCS, Reggio Emilia, Italy
  2. 2Unit of Thoracic Surgery, Azienda Ospedaliera S.Camillo Forlanini, Lazzaro Spallanzani Hospital, Rome, Italy
  3. 3Division of Thoracic Surgery, European Institute of Oncology, Milan, Italy
  1. Correspondence to Dr Filippo Lococo, Unit of Thoracic Surgery, Arcispedale Santa Maria Nuova-IRCCS, via Risorgimento 80, 42100 Reggio Emilia, Italy; filippo_lococo{at}yahoo.it

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Lung cancer is a preventable form of cancer with approximately 90% of cases attributable to cumulative tobacco exposure.1 Smoking cessation and early detection of lung cancer remain critical goals for lung cancer prevention and control. Indeed, the health benefits of smoking cessation reach well beyond reducing the risk of lung cancer,2 resulting in an overall reduction of tobacco-related mortality. Unfortunately, smoking cessation delivery and patient adherence is still a major challenge.

While there is a body of evidence supporting smoking cessation (primary prevention) and early detection of lung cancer (secondary prevention) to decrease lung cancer mortality, data on the effectiveness and interaction between smoking cessation and lung cancer screening are still sparse and inconsistent.3–6 The administration of a rigorous smoking cessation intervention (based on the combination of counselling and drug treatment) to a lung cancer screening population may lead to high smoking cessation rates (up to 30%3).

Published in Thorax, the UK Lung Cancer Screening (UKLS) trial group report the effect of low-dose CT screening on smoking cessation.7 The UKLS trial assessed the feasibility, cost-effectiveness and psychosocial impact of lung cancer screening using a single low-dose CT screen versus no screening in a UK high-risk population. The authors have investigated the behavioural effect of trial participation on smoking cessation in …

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