Scientific American: Oncologists wrestle with COVID-19 pandemic's effect on cancer

UC expert details how pause in lung cancer screening affected patient outcomes

As we near the two-year mark of when the COVID-19 pandemic caused shutdowns and canceled many elective procedures, oncologists across the country continue to examine how this pause in cancer screenings is affecting patients.

Robert Van Haren, MD, said after the lung cancer screening program at UC was closed for about three months in early 2020, doctors found many more suspicious nodules on the lungs compared to usual once screening resumed.

"Even small changes in the size of a lung cancer can be important for overall survival,” Van Haren, assistant professor of surgery in the Division of Thoracic Surgery in UC’s College of Medicine, a UC Health thoracic surgeon and University of Cincinnati Cancer Center member, told Scientific American. “That’s the reason we’re concerned about any delays or stoppages.”

Read the Scientific American article.

Featured photo of Robert Van Haren, MD. Photo/Colleen Kelley/University of Cincinnati.