Early Detection of Lung Cancer is Key

Lung cancer is the leading cause of cancer deaths among both men and women in the United States. Each year, more people die of lung cancer than of colon, breast and prostate cancers combined. Catching lung cancer early before it spreads to other areas is essential. By catching malignant tumors when they are still small, they can be surgically removed before the disease spreads to other areas of the body.

CT Lung Cancer Screening is used to detect lung cancer early, when it is more likely to be curable. If lung cancer is caught before it spreads, the likelihood of surviving five years or more improves to 63 percent. Desert Radiology is an ACR Designated Lung Cancer Screening Center, indicating our imaging center is a provider of safe, effective diagnostic care for those considered at high risk for lung cancer.

What is a CT Lung Cancer Screening?

Lung cancer screening is an exam used to detect the presence of lung cancer in otherwise healthy people with a high risk. Lung cancer screening is recommended for older adults who are longtime smokers or former smokers and who don't have any signs or symptoms of lung cancer.

How is a CT Lung Cancer Screening Exam Done?

A CT Lung Cancer Screening or LDCT (low-dose CT) is a special kind of X-ray that takes multiple pictures as you lie on a table that slides in and out of the machine. A computer then combines these images into a detailed picture of your lungs.

What are the Benefits and Risks Associated with CT Lung Cancer Screening?

The primary benefit is the early detection of lung cancer, which can considerably improve the chances of effective treatment and increase survival.

The risks associated with low-dose CT scans are minimal. There is exposure to low levels of radiation, but the potential health benefits outweigh the risks.

How do I qualify for CT Lung Cancer Screening?

CT Lung Cancer Screening exams are covered by Medicare and most major insurances. You may qualify for lung cancer screening if you meet the following criteria:

  • Are between 50 and 77 years old
  • Are currently smoking or have quit within the last 15 years
  • Have a smoking history of a least 20 pack-years (1 pack a day for 20 years or more)
  • Have no signs, symptoms, or history of cancer for the last 5 years

Next Steps?

Take the American Lung Association Lung Cancer Risk Quiz. Then talk to your healthcare provider about scheduling a CT Lung Cancer Screening at Desert Radiology.