CT lung screening could save your life


Did you know that lung cancer is the leading cause of cancer death in America? More people die from lung cancer every year than breast, colon and prostate cancers combined. Lung cancer was once mostly a male disease associated with smoking. But now lung cancer in women is close to the same incidence rate as men. Women can’t assume that they don’t need to be on the lookout for this deadly cancer. They do.

In recent years, a great deal of research has taken place regarding screening for lung cancer. The good news is that research has proven that CT Lung Screening can detect early lung cancer before any symptoms develop. Early stage lung cancer can be treated more easily and is more often cured than later stage lung cancer.

Based on the National Lung Screening Trial guidelines, screening recommendations are for those who:

  • Are age 55 to 74 years old
  • Have no personal history of cancer
  • Are current or former heavy smokers
  • Have quit smoking less than ten years ago

If you have any signs or symptoms of lung disease you would require a diagnostic test, not a screening.

 
Non-smokers

Even if you are not a smoker, you can still be at risk for lung cancer. Risk factors include:

  • Having been exposed to radon
  • Work, or have worked, with asbestos
  • Significant exposure to secondhand smoke
  • Exposed to cancer-causing agents in the environment
  • Have lung scarring from certain types of pneumonia
  • Have a first-degree relative, such as a parent or sibling, who has had lung cancer

Some people have never smoked, never worked with asbestos and have never been exposed to any known cancer-causing agents; yet, they still get lung cancer, and we don’t know why. Right now there is no sure way to prevent lung cancer.

Don’t be scared, be screened

Low-dose CT lung screening at Jupiter Medical Center gives you the ability to take that first step to safeguard your health. Screening for lung cancer is not a one-time test; it is a process that involves periodic evaluation of your lungs over time. Jupiter Medical Center’s technology offers CT lung screenings with the lowest radiation dose possible. If you are a current or former smoker, you should be screened. It could save your life. The cost of CT lung screening is $99. As with many screenings, most insurance companies do not cover this procedure.

The Thoracic Surgery & Lung Center of Excellence at Jupiter Medical Center is the area’s only comprehensive program dedicated to prevention, early detection, treatment and care of patients with lung cancer and other diseases of the chest and lungs. Named a Center of Excellence by Veran Technologies, we serve as a national teaching site in the use of navigational bronchoscopy, as well as a national teaching site for lung cancer surgery techniques.

To learn more about our Comprehensive Thoracic & Surgery Lung Center of Excellence, call our Health Navigator at 561-263-4437, or visit jupitermed.com/lung.

K. Adam Lee, MD is a board certified thoracic surgeon and Medical Director of the Thoracic Surgery & Lung Center of Excellence at Jupiter Medical Center.