Lung cancer is the number one cause of cancer deaths in the United States. Lung cancer is also the second most common cause of cancer in both men and women. Screening for some types of cancer has reduced deaths by early detection and treatment. Screening for cancer means testing for cancer before there are any symptoms. Now there is a test that can reduce death from lung cancer through early detection, an annual low dose CT scan. The test is not recommended for everyone and it has risks as well as benefits.
The best way to prevent lung cancer is to never smoke or stop smoking now. If you are still smoking, talk to your doctor about ways to help you quit smoking.
We understand that radiation exposure is a concern to referring physicians and patients. We are committed to reducing radiation exposure and following radiation safety principles. It is always best to talk to your doctor about getting a CT scan to screen for lung cancer.
We use a team of experts who will clearly explain the procedure to you including all the risks and benefits of the screening. They will also discuss what the results mean and how they will follow up with you after the initial screening.
- Individuals between the ages of 55 and 77 who are current or former smokers
- History of at least 30 “pack years” of smoking. (A pack year equals the number of packs smoked per day times the number of years the patient smoked; two packs a day for 10 years equals 20 pack years.)
- Former smokers must have quit within the past 15 years
If you feel that you qualify for a lung cancer screening, please contact your primary care physician, or contact us at St. Mary’s Lung and Sleep Center at 970-298-5864.