LSU: Knowledge and Attitudes Towards Low Dose Computed Tomography Lung cancer Screening and Smoking Among African Americans—a mixed method study

According to Dr. Tung-Sung Tseng, associate professor at Louisiana State University Health Sciences Center (LSUHSC) School of Public Health, the purpose of this study is to investigate knowledge, attitudes, and smoking cessation needs for African Americans who receive low dose computed tomography (LDCT) in an effort to reduce the health burden of lung cancer.

The research team gathered data using a self-administered questionnaire and structured in-depth interview. Descriptive statistics were used to provide summary information on knowledge, attitude and smoking behaviors, and thematic analysis was used to analyze interview data. The sample size for both the quantitative and qualitative approach was fifteen. The results showed that 73 percent of participants were male, the mean age was 61.8 years old, and 66.7 percent of participants had an income less than $20,000. Eighty percent had an education level of high school or below and 73.3 percent were overweight or obese. Smoking history was long (mean years =39 SD =14.9), but the number of cigarettes smoked per day was low (mean =9.2 SD =7.3), and 64 percent of the patients had a low nicotine dependence. Assessment of knowledge and attitudes towards LDCT revealed that participants had a moderate knowledge score (mean =4.3 SD =2.6), and most had a positive attitude. All participants planned to quit smoking, with 73 percent planning to quit within the next 6 months.  The team concluded that African Americans who receive LDCT lung cancer screening in this study have a moderate/lower knowledge score and positive attitude towards LDCT.   Understanding the factors associated with smoking cessation among at-risk African American smokers will help reduce disparities in lung cancer burden and is important to improve health for medically underserved minority populations.

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