VA Offers Lung Cancer Screening for Early Detection in At-Risk Veterans

PHOENIX (August 14, 2023) – Lung cancer is the leading cause of death from cancer in the U.S., and is also one of the most frequently diagnosed cancers among Veterans.

According to the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA), nearly 8,000 Veterans are diagnosed and treated by VA each year, and about 5,000 die from lung cancer annually. An estimated 900,000 are at risk of lung cancer due to age, smoking and environmental factors.

VA research also has found that Veterans have a higher lung cancer rate – and a lower survival rate – than the general U.S. population. This research confirms it is essential that Veterans are aware of increased lung cancer risks so the threat can be minimized with proper attention.

Lung cancer is treatable when detected early. One key practice is to prioritize screening to identify early-stage lung cancer in certain high-risk Veterans, according to VA.

VA provides early lung cancer screening for Veterans who meet certain criteria:

VA encourages Veterans to talk with their provider to determine if lung cancer screening is appropriate. The procedure is quick and even if the results are normal, it is important to return annually for a new scan, according to VA.

For more information on lung cancer screening, read this recent VA News item highlighting how VA is helping identify cancer early.