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.
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
Talk to your doctor to see if a CT lung cancer screening is right for you.