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Doctor insights on: Can Chest X Ray Detect Lung Cancer

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Can a chest X-ray or echo detect lung cancer?

Can a chest X-ray or echo detect lung cancer?

Not easily: Cxr has been compared head to head with chest ct scan for screening in high risk patients for lung cancer. That study, national lung screening trial, found that in high risk patients, screening chest ct scan was more effective, and was found to save lives. Larger cancers might be seen on a cxr, but smaller cancers may be missed. ...Read more

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Dr. Barry Rosen
4,298 doctors shared insights

Cancer (Definition)

Cancer is a group of diseases that is characterized by uncontrolled cell growth leading to invasion of surrounding tissues that spread to other parts of the body. Cancer can begin anywhere in the body and is usually related to one or more genetic mutations that allow normal cells to become malignant by interfering with internal cellular control mechanisms, such as programmed cell death or by preventing ...Read more


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Can you see lung cancer in a chest x-ray?

Can you see lung cancer in a chest x-ray?

Maybe: It depends on the size and location of the lung cancer. Small cancers (less than 1 cm) may be difficult to identify with chest radiographs. Ct scan of the chest is much more sensitive in evaluating for lung cancer and associated disease. ...Read more

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Would a clear chest X-ray mean there is no lung cancer?

Would a clear chest X-ray mean there is no lung cancer?

Not necessarily: Chest xrays are not regarded as good lung cancer screening tools. Ct-scan, while imperfect, is currently the best demonstrated screening tool for lung cancer. A proper protocol chest ct will use about the same radiation as a mammogram. http://goo.gl/b69an. ...Read more

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If lung cancer cannot be detected on chest X-ray what's the point in having one?

If lung cancer cannot be detected on chest X-ray what's the point in having one?

Lung cancer CAN: Be seen on chest x-ray, depending on the size and location of the lesion. Ct is the gold standard, but much more expensive and has a higher radiation dose. ...Read more

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Other than chest x-ray, any other ways to look for lung cancer? Blood tests, etc.? Thank you.

Low dose CT: The national lung screening trial (new england journal of medicine) showed that screening chest ct in high risk patients (heavy smokers and older patients) reduced deaths from lung cancer by 20% compared to patients screened with plain x-ray alone. There will soon be specific guidelines on exactly who should under go routine chest ct screening. ...Read more

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I stopped smoking at 29 yrs old after close to 15 yrs smoking. I just had a clear chest x ray. What are my future chances of getting lung cancer?

I stopped smoking at 29 yrs old after close to 15 yrs smoking. I just had a clear chest x ray. What are my future chances of getting lung cancer?

See below: This is the best thing you did! your chances of getting lung cancer will diminish each year, reaching those of a non-smoker in about ten years. Congratulations! ...Read more

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I've had a cough for a week or so. Dry and wet cough about 12x a day. Could this be lung cancer? I had a clear chest X-ray in july. 36yo smoker.

I've had a cough for a week or so. Dry and wet cough about  12x a day. Could this be lung cancer? I had a clear chest X-ray in july.  36yo smoker.

Maybe: The typical warning sign for lung cancer is coughing up blood, although this is not always present in people with lung cancer. The most important consideration is whether or not you smoke. You need to stop smoking right away, permanently, and live a long, healthy, cancer-free life. If you stop smoking now, your risk of lung cancer is greatly reduced. ...Read more

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On february, my chest X-ray showed an increase in interstitial marks. In march i was diagnosed with stage4nsc lung cancer. Was the increased interstitial marks a sign?

On february, my chest X-ray showed an increase in interstitial marks. In march i was diagnosed with stage4nsc lung cancer. Was the increased interstitial marks a sign?

Yes or no: As cancers spread in the lungs, they can cause what we call lymphangitic spread of disease. Those lymph vessels are along the blood vessels and yes they can look like increased interstitial markings. To make a decision from that alone would be difficult unless a mass is seen or a diagnosis established beforehand. Even radiation pneumonitis looks the same. Decisions are made from previous diagnosis. ...Read more

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Chest X-ray results say curvilinear density in the R pericardial region. Could represent fat pad or small R middle lobe infiltrate. Lung cancer?

Chest X-ray results say curvilinear density in the R pericardial region. Could represent fat pad or small R middle lobe infiltrate. Lung cancer?

It is unlikely: that it is cancer, but it still may require further evaluation with a CT scan to be sure. If you had any previous chest xrays elsewhere, have them sent to the radiologist to compare with the new one. That could solve the issue without any additional tests. Talk to your doctor about the results. ...Read more

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What can recurring blood in spit indicate? Chest X ray normal. 20 year old male, never smoked, no family history of lung cancer

What can recurring blood in spit indicate? Chest X ray normal. 20 year old male, never smoked, no family history of lung cancer

Oral blood: Anytime there is recurrent blood in oral secretions, a thorough exam is in order. While many doctors immediately consider chest or respiratory causes, there are oral gum and tooth conditions, such as periodontal disease or gingivitis which can be the source of blood. In addition, nasal or sinus disease may result in oral blood. See your dentist, and go from there. ...Read more

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Chest X-ray clear, blood in phlegm is now gone but have upper back pain. If it was lung cancer would it have shown on x ray? Having anxiety!

Chest X-ray clear, blood in phlegm is now gone but have upper back pain.  If it was lung cancer would it have shown on x ray? Having anxiety!

Not always: A chest x-ray can miss lung cancers, especially if they are early/small, when they can be best treated. Although it is not likely you have lung cancer given your age, please see your health care provider and get further evaluation. A chest ct would be a better test for lung cancer depending on your specific situation, but we want to limit radiation exposure, so benefit needs to outweigh risk. ...Read more

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I had blood from mouth after sneezing? Is it normal? I got a chest x ray and sputum cytology. Is that sufficient to rule out lung cancer?

I had blood from mouth after sneezing? Is it normal? I got a chest x ray and sputum cytology. Is that sufficient to rule out lung cancer?

Lung Cancer unlikely: You are too young to have lung Cancer. I would advise you to follow up with your doctor as to how he/she should monitor you further. It will partly depend on your future symptoms. If there is any more coughing with blood , then additional testing would be necessary. otherwise you should do fine. But do not smoke! ...Read more

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Scared I have lung cancer. I quit smoking after 4 years, having shortness of breath & back pain doctor not worried after a clear chest X-ray. Chances?

Scared I have lung cancer. I quit smoking after 4 years, having shortness of breath & back pain doctor not worried after a clear chest X-ray. Chances?

Rest assured: It is good you quit. It is good your results satisfied your doctor. There are other causes of shortness of breath and back pain including GAD, which you have. Take this opportunity to try some CBT therapy. It will teach skills in mgmt of anxiety and build confidence in your good choices. It is not atall likely that you have lung cancer or that you will. Think about it. ...Read more

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Can lung cancer be detected in a chest X-ray for pneumonia?

Can lung cancer be detected in a chest X-ray for pneumonia?

Possible: But the pneumonia density can obscure, or be distal to a cancer. Usually follow up x-rays or ct after acute pneumonia clears can be helpful. ...Read more

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I have all the symptoms of lung cancer: shortness of breath, cough with yellow phlegm and occasional red streaks, fingernail clubbing...but my Chest X-Ray and Noncontrast High-Res Chest CT were negative. Doctors are saying I'm fine, but I'm scared?

I have all the symptoms of lung cancer: shortness of breath, cough with yellow phlegm and occasional red streaks, fingernail clubbing...but my Chest X-Ray and Noncontrast High-Res Chest CT were negative. 

Doctors are saying I'm fine, but I'm scared?

Trust your physician: or obtain a pulmonary medical consultation as a second opinion. Without symptoms such as weight loss. anorexia, expectorating pure blood. chronic spasmodic coughing,etc. this is not consistent with lung cancer, especially with a negative CT scan. I suggest behavioral counseling with a certified psychotherpist for CBT. ...Read more

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Lung (Definition)

Deoxygenated blood enters the lungs from the right side of the heart and travels to the lungs. When you inspire, oxygen flows into the lungs, transverses the capilliares and attaches to hemoglobin down a gradient. At the same time, co2 diffuses into the capilaries and is expelled with exhalation. Oxygen rich blood then flows to the left side of the heart and into the ...Read more


Dr. Michael Gabor
801 doctors shared insights

Xray Of Chest (Definition)

A chest x-ray is the basic radiographic study for evaluation of the heart and lungs. It usually consists of 2 views: postero-anterior and lateral. The image is now usually acquired digitally with the sensor placed against the front of the chest for the pa view and on the left side of the chest for the lateral view. Pneumonia, heart enlargement, CHF and many other ...Read more