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Lung Cancer. 2011 Jun;72(3):303-8. doi: 10.1016/j.lungcan.2010.09.014. Epub 2010 Oct 30.

Risk of lung cancer in patients with preinvasive bronchial lesions followed by autofluorescence bronchoscopy and chest computed tomography.

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Department of General Thoracic Surgery, Graduate School of Medicine, Chiba University, Chiba, Japan.



To assess risk of lung cancer (LC) in patients with preinvasive bronchial lesions and to identify factors associated with higher risk.


124 patients with one or more preinvasive bronchial lesions and normal chest computed tomography (CT) (mean age 66.7 years, 121 males and 3 females), followed-up by white light and autofluorescence bronchoscopy (AFB) every 4-6 mo and chest CT every 6-12 mo, end points were development of carcinoma in situ (CIS) or LC.


Among 124 patients with 240 preinvasive bronchial lesions, 20 CIS or LC lesions were detected during follow-up in 20 (16%) patients, 7 were detected as new endobronchial lesions, 10 as new peripheral lesions and 3 as local progression from severe dysplasia to CIS. Median time to progression from the same site or development of CIS/LC elsewhere was 24 months (range: 6-54 mo). The Cumulative risk of development of CIS/LC was 7% at one year, 20% at three years and 44% at 5 years. Among detected lung cancers, 80% were stage 0 or stage I and underwent treatment with curative intent. Diagnosis of new SD during follow-up (p=0.0001), chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) (p=0.001) or smoking index >52 pack-year (p=0.042) was associated with higher risk. Even after controlling for other risk factors, COPD was associated with risk for lung cancer. Baseline lesion grade was not predictive of patient outcome (p=0.146).


Patients with preinvasive bronchial lesions, especially those with new SD during follow-up, COPD or smoking >52 pack-year are at high risk of LC, AFB and CT follow-up facilitated early detection and treatment with curative intent.

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