African Americans have both the highest incidence and mortality of lung cancer compared to any other racial/ethnic group. In 2009 – 2013, Louisiana residents had among the highest lung and bronchus cancer incidence rates compared with the U.S. national incidence rates (75.3 cases vs. 65.1 cases per 100,000 person-years). This incidence rate was even higher for African American males in Louisiana (110.6 cases per 100,000 person-years). Low-dose computed tomography (LDCT) as an early stage intervention that has been proven to reduce mortality from lung cancer and delivery of abnormal findings from LDCT can also be critical teachable moments to help motivate people to change their smoking behaviors. However, studies have shown that despite the benefits of LDCT, it is not frequently utilized by the population of eligible patients.
[Photo: Dr. Tung-Sung Tseng]
Louisiana State University Health Sciences Center School of Public Health in New Orleans was recently awarded pilot funding by the Louisiana Cancer Research Consortium. Dr. Tung-Sung Tseng, associate professor in behavioral and community health sciences in the School of Public Health, will serve as the principal investigator of the grant entitled “Using Low-dose computed tomography (LDCT) lung cancer screening to increase smoking cessation among African Americans”.
“This project will be a first step in exploring and addressing the smoking cessation needs of at-risk African American smokers undergoing lung cancer screening to expand our understanding of the ideal teachable moment, and barriers and facilitators, for a smoking cessation intervention in a lung cancer screening context,” notes Dr. Tseng. A culturally targeted smoking cessation intervention for African American at-risk smokers based on feedback from pilot participants will be developed and refined.
Once finalized, the intervention will be evaluated with the target population at a larger scale with LSU Tobacco Control Initiative (TCI). An understanding of the cognitive factors associated with smoking cessation among at-risk African American smokers will help reduce disparities in lung cancer burden, including incidence and mortality. “This work has great potential to help reduce the enormous public health burden of lung cancer and carry out the National Institute of Health’s mission by improving the health for medically underserved minority populations.”