Early diagnosis of lung cancer in people most at risk

Francis Sullivan*, Mara Myrthe van Beusekom

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalEditorialpeer-review

1 Citation (Scopus)


The current approach to the diagnosis of lung cancer is ineffective. By the time typical symptoms are apparent, the disease has usually spread beyond the primary site. As a result, 80% of the 48 000 people a year who develop lung cancer in the UK have a poor prognosis, with fewer than 10% surviving for 10 years or more. People over the age of 50 years, smokers, and those living in areas of socioeconomic deprivation are affected disproportionately. Late diagnosis and higher levels of multimorbidity in these areas constitute another example of the Inverse Care Law. Earlier diagnosis is likely to enable more patients to benefit from recent advances in surgery, pharmacological interventions, and radiotherapy.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)572-573
Number of pages2
JournalBritish Journal of General Practice
Issue number701
Early online date26 Nov 2020
Publication statusPublished - Dec 2020


  • Lung cancer
  • Screening
  • Co-design
  • Deprivation


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