CT Lung Cancer Screening

CT Lung Cancer Screening

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Lung cancer is the leading cause of cancer death for men and women in the United States, claiming more lives than breast, colorectal, prostate, and pancreatic cancers combined. Most patients diagnosed with lung cancer today already have advanced disease-40 percent are stage IV, 30 percent are stage III. And the five-year survival rate is only 16 percent.

CT lung cancer screening may reduce the risk of death from lung cancer in highest risk individuals- particularly current and former smokers-who have not yet shown symptoms. The screening uses a low-dose CT scan to detect nodules in the lungs that might indicate cancer. The procedure is non-invasive and therefore causes no discomfort. Plus, it's quick – the procedure takes less than 20 minutes and doesn't require you to disrobe.

Early detection through a low-dose CT lung cancer screening has the potential to save more than 20,000 lives per year in the United States.

Our CT lung cancer screening offers the following:

  • A nurse navigator to guide you through the screening process, including referral assistance for follow-up care if a nodule or area of concern is identified.
  • Prompt communication about the screening results, both to you and your designated healthcare provider. Plus, if you are a Carilion Clinic patient, your screening results will become part of your Carilion electronic medical record to coordinate your care in the most efficient way.
  • A doctor's referral is not needed to participate in the screening. However, you must designate a healthcare provider, who you have seen within the last three years, to receive the results.
  • The healthcare provider does not need to be a Carilion provider. If you need assistance obtaining a provider, we are happy to assist with that as well.

You may be eligible for the CT lung cancer screening if you:

  • Are age 55-74
  • Have a smoking history of 30 or more pack years (an average of one pack per day for 30 years)
  • Are a current or former smoker (must have quit within last 15 years)


  • Are age 50 and above
  • Have a smoking history of 20 or more pack years (an average of one pack per day for 20 years)
  • Plus one of the following risk factors:
    • Personal cancer history (excluding lung cancer)
    • Family history of lung cancer
    • Personal history of lung disease
    • Radon, asbestos, or other occupational exposure

In addition to the above criteria, one of our nurses will ask you a few additional questions to ensure your eligibility, as some medical exclusions may apply. To learn more about the screening, please contact one of our nurses at 540-224-2522.