Lung cancer accounts for more deaths than any other cancer in both men and women. Finding any cancer at an early stage is always best, but especially with lung cancer.
Early detection is the key to beating lung cancer. Most lung cancers are first diagnosed based on symptoms. Unfortunately, symptoms often don’t occur until the disease is in a late stage when treatment options are limited.
Symptoms of lung cancer are not very specific and generally reflect damage to the lungs’ ability to function normally.
The most common symptoms of lung cancer are:
Persistent, worsening cough that will not go away
Spitting up small amounts of blood
Chest pain or discomfort
Changes in the voice or being hoarse
Recurrent pneumonia or bronchitis
Unexplained weight loss or loss of appetite
How to get screened for lung cancer
Based on the findings released in the 2010 National Lung Screening Trial (NLST), Franciscan St. Francis Health was the first in Indiana and one of the first in the nation to offer a lung CT screening program for the early detection of lung cancer.
The lung screening is safe, simple, non-invasive and results in a minimal amount of radiation exposure.
Who should have a Lung Scan?
The screening is recommended for men or women ages 55-80 who meet one or more of the following criteria:
Men and women age 50 or older who have averaged smoking one pack of cigarettes a day for 20 years and have one additional risk factor, such as:
- Cancer history - Cancers with an increased risk of developing new primary lung cancer include survivors of lung cancer, lymphomas, cancer of the head and neck and smoking-related cancers.
- Lung disease history - such as chronic obstructive pulmonary disease or pulmonary fibrosis.
- Family history of lung cancer
- Radon exposure
- Occupational exposure - such as carcinogens targeting the lungs including silica, cadmium, asbestos, arsenic, beryllium, chromium (VI), diesel fumes and nickel.
Call (877) 888-1777 to schedule a screening.
* A Lung Scan is a simple, non-invasive computed tomography (CT) screening that use a minimal amount of radiation.
*The CT lung screening is covered by Medicare (patients age 55-77) and may be covered by private insurers. Please consult your primary care physician if you would like to have this service covered by your insurance.
The screening package includes:
Low-radiation dose lung computed tomography (CT) scan evaluated by a radiologist who specializes in lung disease
Heart computed tomography (CT) scan (coronary artery calcium scoring) evaluated by a cardiologist if eligible
Blood sugar screening
Blood pressure check
Body mass index assessment
Easy-to-understand report and educational information
Lung Screening FAQ
What is a CT Lung Screening?
The lung CT screening is an exam that looks to detect lung cancer in its earliest stage and when it is most treatable. It consists of a low-radiation dose, non-contrasted helical computed tomography (CT) that scans the entire chest in about five to ten seconds during a single breath hold.
Who should get a lung scan?
This exam is for patients that are at high risk for lung cancer. Typically, that includes former or current smokers ages 55 to 75 who have smoked the equivalent of one pack of cigarettes a day for 30 years or more. See the screening criteria listed above.
What is the risk of radiation exposure from this exam?
A low dose of radiation is required to perform a lung scan. Radiation safety is a top priority at Franciscan St. Francis Health. We are at the forefront of radiation dose reduction without sacrificing image quality. Our team regulates and monitors all radiation doses to ensure that every patient receives the least amount of radiation required during all exams and procedures.
Who interprets these screening exams?
Board-certified radiologists with special training in lung disease imaging review every lung scan. Board-certified cardiologists evaluate heart scans.
What if the lung screening results in a finding?
Based on the radiologist’s final report, any concerning findings are forwarded to our Lung Cancer Nurse Navigator for review. The navigator will contact you to discuss the findings and recommended next steps. If appropriate, you may be referred to our multidisciplinary Lung Clinic where a team of physicians specializing in lung cancer will review your case.
More information >
Why screen for lung cancer?
Lung cancer is the No. 1 cancer killer in America, claiming more lives than colorectal, breast, pancreatic and prostate cancer combined. Without early detection screening, more than 95 percent of lung cancer patients eventually die from their lung cancer, usually within a few years of when they are diagnosed. Annual screening with CT scans can find lung cancers in their earliest stage, when up to 90 percent can be cured.
To see a listing of our combined screening packages (heart, lung or vascular) click here.