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Lung Cancer

1/8th inch lung nodule

02/10/2009

Question:

in Nov, I had a chest x-ray which showed emphazema but nothing else. First of Jan another chest x-ray and ct scan showed a lung nodule about 1/8th inch in size. Because of how quickly this showed up and the size, what are the chances that it is cancer?

Answer:

You cannot really estimate whether this is growing and how fast because the first study was a chest xray, which is not very accurate. To accurately assess growth, you need to use the same technique. For a very small lesion like this, it is probably reasonable to repeat the CT scan in a few months. If unchanged, then the interval for repeat CT chest can then be lengthened. It may be appropriate to be evaluated by a lung cancer expert, such as a pulmonologist or thoracic surgeon, who is familiar with the evaluation and surveillance of pulmonary nodules.

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Response by:

Michael F Reed, MD Michael F Reed, MD
Assistant Professor of Surgery
College of Medicine
University of Cincinnati