Early diagnosis, by means of low dose CAT exams, can reduce the level of mortality in lung cancer by up to 20%.
In the Champalimaud Lung Unit we treat the cancer with the highest incidence (1.6 million cases per year, equivalent to 12.7% of the total amount) and mortality (23% of the total number of cancer deaths per annum) in the world. In Portugal, around 3500 people per year die from lung cancer, making it the leading cause of death from cancer in men and the fourth-leading killer in women.
A multidisciplinary team comprising oncologists, doctors, thoracic surgeons, pulmonologists, radiotherapists, radiologists, pathologists, nuclear medicine specialists, nurses, psycho-oncologists and nutritionists works together to make the most advanced forms of diagnosis and treatment available to patients in the Champalimaud Clinical Centre. One example of this is the fact that our thoracic surgeons are one of the few teams worldwide able to offer the procedure of one-port video-assisted thoracic surgery, which permits a significant reduction in pain and other post-operative complications.
In addition to research in oncobiology, the Champalimaud Lung Unit also has a fully functioning programme of risk assessment and early diagnosis designed to diagnose the disease in a stage which permits curative treatment and consequently allows us to significantly improve the prognostic outlook. Nowadays it is well known that if we carry out a careful programme of risk assessment and early diagnosis which allows us to detect the disease in its early stages, it is possible to reduce mortality in lung cancer by 20%. This number is extremely significant when we consider that lung cancer has one of the highest mortality rates of any cancer worldwide.
Our Lung Unit also treats other types of thoracic tumours including thymomas, other mediastinal tumours, sarcomas, tumours of the thoracic wall amd mesotheliomas, and even lung metastases, irrespective of the primary tumour.
Source: Informação sobre a incidência e mortalidade por cancro em Portugal, “Globocan 2008”, International Agency for Research on Cancer, World Health Organization.