Lung cancer survival rates rise, diagnoses decline

Lung cancer survival rates jumped 4.6 percentage points in the last five years, and diagnosis rates have decreased 8%, according to the American Lung Association's 2023 "State of Lung Cancer" report released Nov. 7.

Although communities of color experience worse outcomes from lung cancer, recent data shows they no longer have significantly lower survival rates compared to white Americans.

Here are six lung cancer stats to know:

  • Lung cancer survival nationally increased from 22% to 26.6% in the last five years. Rhode Island had the best survival rate at 33.3%, and Oklahoma had the worst at 21.2%.

  • Only 4.5% of those eligible for low-dose CT scans received screening in 2022.

  • Black, Latino and American Indian/Alaska Native individuals with lung cancer face worse outcomes, including less likely to be diagnosed early, less likely to receive surgical treatment and more likely to receive no treatment. Asian and Pacific Islander individuals were less likely to receive early diagnosis than white patients but more likely to receive surgical treatment.

  • Roughly 238,000 people will be diagnosed with lung cancer this year, but the rate of new cases has decreased 8% nationally. Utah had the nation's best lung cancer rate, while Kentucky had the worst with almost 2.4 times the incidence rate of Utah.

  • Nationally, 20.8% of cases underwent surgery, a 4% improvement over the last five years.

  • About 20.6% of patients did not receive any treatment, an improved rate of 2% in the last five years. North Dakota had the best lack-of-treatment rates, with only 14.3% not receiving treatment, while New Mexico had the worst at 31.5%

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