A CT Lung Cancer Screening detects lung cancer in its earliest stages, when it is most treatable. Unfortunately, lung cancer has no symptoms in its early stages. More than 85 percent of the men and women who are diagnosed are at a late stage, after symptoms occur and when there is very little chance of a cure. CT Lung Cancer Screening utilizes a low-dose, non-contrasted computerized tomography (CT) scan that uses X-rays to scan the entire chest in about 5 to 10 seconds during a single breath hold. The exam takes approximately 15 minutes to complete. Early detection can be life-saving.
What is the eligibility criteria for CT Lung Cancer Screening?
- 50-74 years old
- Current smoker
- Former smoker who has quit within the past 15 years
- No history of cancer (except non-melanoma skin cancer) within the last five years
How do I know if I should undergo CT Lung Cancer Screening?
You should consider having a CT Lung Cancer Screening if you are currently a heavy smoker (or former heavy smoker who has quit within the last 15 years). A heavy smoker is someone who smokes an average of more than one pack per day over 20 years, who is 50 to 74 years old.
How is the CT Lung Cancer Screening performed?
The screening test is performed with a low-dose spiral (helical) CT scanner. The CT scanner rotates around your body while you lay still on a table that passes through the center of the scanner. The CT scan produces detailed images of the inside of your body, using a computer that combines the X-ray images taken from different angles. The screening CT can be performed with a single, short breath hold, and takes less than five to 10 seconds to capture the images. The duration of the entire appointment is only 30 minutes.
Should I be concerned about the radiation exposure and cancer risk from a CT?
Radiation from a screening CT is far less than the dose from a diagnostic CT. The benefit of finding and treating early-stage lung cancer will far outweigh the risks from a low dose of radiation from a CT.
For more information or to make an appointment, call (307) 633-7800.