I had a ct scan of lungs and my pcp called to say they saw a 6.5 mm non-calcified spot on my rt lung. He wants me to go to the lung specialist to deal with it. Anyone have any input on what we're talking about here?
Unfortunately, there is no standard best approach for such cases, the recommendations will vary across institutions.
Non-calcified nodules are harder to distinguish whether or not they represent something benign or something malignant. Among benign lesions, some 38 to 63% are non-calcified. Among carcinoids (this is a slower growing tumor than cancer), about 33% are non-calcified. Among lung cancer, some 90% are non-calcified.
On the other hand, looking only at size, the risk of malignancy is anywhere from 6-28%.
Consider also your risk factors for prior infections (tuberculosis, sarcoidosis) and for lung cancer (smoking history, occupational history).
Discuss your individualized risk with the doctor you were referred to, and then prepare to make a value judgment regarding biopsy. A value judgment will be based not only on the known scientific data, but also on your personal preferences (taking into account, what is feasible, and acceptable to you based on your own risk evaluating behavior).
My best to you and Happy Holidays
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