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Screening of Alberta Asbestos Exposed Workers for Lung Cancer and Mesothelioma

Published: May 25, 2016

Primary Outcome Measure

  • Change in SF-12 quality of life score [ Time Frame: Baseline vs. 14 days post receipt of screen results. ] [ Designated as safety issue: No ]
  • Secondary Outcome Measures

    • Change in EQ-5D and STAI [ Time Frame: Baseline vs. 14 days post receipt of screen results. ] [ Designated as safety issue: No ]
    • Lung cancer detection rate [ Time Frame: 3 years ] [ Designated as safety issue: No ]
    • Mesothelioma detection rate [ Time Frame: 3 years ] [ Designated as safety issue: No ]

    Detailed Description:
    In Canada, lung cancer is the primary cause of cancer mortality above the next three culprits combined (breast, colon and prostate cancer). Cigarette smoking is the most important risk factor in the development of lung cancer. Another population of particular interest in Alberta involves workers with occupational exposure to asbestos as asbestos and tobacco exposure results in a synergistic effect on lung cancer risk. Mesothelioma is a rare cancer of the lining of the lung with poor prognosis of which 80% of cases are believed to be related to asbestos exposure.

    Unfortunately, despite some advances in treatment, there has been little impact on overall survival for both lung cancer and mesothelioma in the past 20 years in great part because patients usually present with disease at an advanced and incurable stage. Additional strategies are desperately needed to reduce the morbidity and mortality associated with this disease.

    The objectives of this study are to develop and implement a LDCT screening approach for lung cancer and mesothelioma in asbestos-exposed workers in Alberta; to determine participants’ motivation and expectations associated with a screening program, their satisfaction with the program, and the psychosocial consequences of the screening program; to determine the accuracy of a lung cancer risk prediction model modified to include asbestos exposure; and to determine the 3-year clinical incidence of lung cancer in asbestos-exposed individuals interested in lung cancer screening but who do not meet minimal risk threshold. The investigators will offer a combined lung cancer and mesothelioma screening program for 200 Alberta asbestos-exposed workers based on low-dose CT scanning.



    Inclusion Criteria
    Age 50 – 80 years (either gender, any ethnic group)

    Documented exposure to asbestos for at least one year, at least 10 years prior to study entry

    Ability to provide informed consent and participate in study procedures
    Exclusion Criteria
    Any medical condition, such as severe heart disease (e.g. unstable angina, chronic congestive heart failure), severe lung disease or lung disease requiring supplemental oxygen, solid organ transplant, that in the opinion of the physician unlikely to benefit from screening due to shortened life-expectancy from the co-morbidities or inability to tolerate diagnosis and treatment of a screen detected abnormality

    Have been previously diagnosed with lung cancer or mesothelioma

    Have had other cancer within the past 5 years with the exception of the following cancers: non-melanomatous skin cancer, localized prostate cancer, carcinoma in situ (CIS) of the cervix, or superficial bladder cancer. Treatment of the exceptions must have ended >6 months before registration into this study


    CT scan of the chest in the past 2 years

    Unwilling to have a LDCT of chest

    Unwilling to sign a consent
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