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Blood test may aid doctors in lung cancer diagnosis

Category: Cancer Detection and Tumor Markers

Blood test may help diagnose lung cancer A new blood test may be able to help diagnose lung cancer while avoiding the use of costly and dangerous invasive procedures.

Dr Steven Dubinett, professor of medicine and pathology at the David Geffen School of Medicine, and other colleagues put together a 40-marker panel of lung cancer biomarkers based on a study involving nearly 150 patients who either have the disease or are thought to be at high-risk because of their smoking histories.

Researchers found that the panel correctly identified patients with lung cancer 88 percent of the time while accurately identifying respondents who did not have the disease in 79 percent of cases.

"The diagnosis of an indeterminate pulmonary lesion can be difficult, and current methods for confirming an abnormal imaging study include invasive procedures for biopsies," said Dubinett.

"We anticipate that in the future, blood tests will be clinically relevant and lead to reduced use of more invasive diagnostic measures," he added.

Of the 150,000 positive chest x-rays reported each year, approximately 25 percent of patients will display benign lung pathologies after further examination. Blood tests may help patients evade various invasive procedures that are commonly used to verify x-rays.
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