Lung cancer is the number one cause of cancer-related death in both men and women, killing more Americans each year than colon, breast, and prostate cancers combined. But there is hope. The number of new lung cancer cases is decreasing, in part due to people quitting smoking. And the number of people dying from lung cancer is also decreasing due to new and better treatments and due to finding lung cancer early through lung cancer screening.
(Source: American Cancer Society, www.cancer.org )
What is lung cancer screening?
Lung cancer screening uses a low radiation dose chest CT scan (LDCT) to find spots in the lungs called lung nodules, some of which may be cancer. In 2011, a study called the National Lung Screening Trial proved that yearly lung cancer screening with LDCT can decrease the risk of dying from lung cancer by finding lung cancer at its earlier stages. Other studies since then have also shown the benefit of LDCT lung cancer screening.
Lung cancer screening with LDCT is for people who have no lung cancer symptoms and are at high risk of lung cancer because of their age and a heavy smoking history. Lung cancer screening is not a single test, it’s a program of yearly screenings and follow-up done with a team approach under the direction of your health care provider. Screening may not find all lung cancers, but research shows that if people at high risk have this test every year they're less likely to die from lung cancer.
Lung Cancer Screening at Exeter Hospital
Exeter Hospital’s Lung Cancer Screening Program provides low dose chest CT (LDCT) lung cancer screening to adults who meet the United States Preventive Services Task Force eligibility criteria or the Medicare coverage criteria, and have an order for a LDCT screening from their health care provider.
Our program is accredited by the American College of Radiology as a Designated Lung Cancer Screening Center. We follow national, research-based standards to deliver team-based care and ongoing follow-up. Our team includes:
- Specialist physicians who are board-certified in radiology, pulmonary medicine, surgery and oncology.
- CT scan technologists who are expert in high quality, low-dose chest CT imaging techniques.
- The Nurse Navigator who tracks patients in the program and coordinates communication and follow-up.