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Midlothian, IL
A 24-year-old male asked:

Smoked alot of weed for 7 years now and quit smoking cigarettes after 4 pack years. about to be 25. should i get a ct scan to check for cancer or no?

3 doctor answers3 doctors weighed in
Dr. John To
Dr. John Toanswered
32 years experience
No: The USPSTF recommends annual screening for lung cancer with low-dose computed tomography (LDCT) in adults aged 55 to 80 years who have a 30 pack-year smoking history and currently smoke or have quit within the past 15 years. Screening should be discontinued once a person has not smoked for 15 years or develops a health problem that substantially limits life expectancy or the ability to do surgery
Created for people with ongoing healthcare needs but benefits everyone.
Dr. Michael Gabor
Diagnostic Radiology 35 years experience
You can discuss: this with your doctor in order to fully assess your risk profile, but based on your age and limited smoking history there would probably be little benefit in getting a screening chest CT at this point.
Created for people with ongoing healthcare needs but benefits everyone.
Dr. David Dinhofer
Radiology 43 years experience
Difficult but no CT: Cancer is extremely rare in someone who is 25 years old. Because of the radiation exposure, I would not recommend a CT unless you had more than a worry to suggest Cancer. Unexplained weight loss and loss of appetite are associate with Cancer. Smoking pot or cigarettes puts you at increased risk for cancer. You are young enough that stopping both is best and will lower your risk in the future.
Created for people with ongoing healthcare needs but benefits everyone.
Dr. John To
Dr. John To commented
undefined 32 years experience
I agree. However, the real risk for a patient population with lower risk and lower prevalence is not the radiation exposure from CT. The dose we use for screening is ultra low dose. It is much lower than that used in trauma, pulmonary embolism or patients with known cancer. The real risk is the false positive nodules detected which will require follow up or surgery.
Jan 1, 2015
Last updated Apr 27, 2020


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