GRANTSBURG, WI -- Lung cancer screening that can detect lung cancer in its earliest stages is available at Burnett Medical Center (BMC). The screening, which uses low-dose CT (computerized tomography), is recommended for people at high-risk of developing lung cancer.
“With November being Lung Cancer Awareness Month, it’s an important time to recognize that lung cancer is the leading cause of cancer death in men and women worldwide,” said Angie Bonander, Radiologic Technologist at Burnett Medical Center. “CT lung screening can detect lung cancer in its earliest stages, when it is most treatable.”
Studies have shown that for high-risk populations the screening can lower the risk of death from lung cancer by 20 percent.
Cindy Jensen, Radiologic Technologist and Diagnostic Imaging Manager, explained how the screening works, “CT lung screening is painless, noninvasive, and takes just a few minutes to perform. The patient lies on a table that slides in and out of the CT scanner as special x-ray technology takes a series of pictures of the patient’s lungs. A computer then creates an image that allows providers to identify small masses of tissue in the lung called nodules.”
If a nodule is detected, periodic follow-up scans may be recommended to monitor for changes. If a lung nodule is new or has changed in size, shape or appearance, further testing may be recommended to determine if it is cancerous.
The United States Preventive Services Task Force and the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, among others, recommend that current and former smokers at high-risk for lung cancer discuss the appropriateness of the CT lung screening with their primary care provider. BMC’s Diagnostic Imaging Department offers CT lung screening to those who meet the following eligibility requirements:
- Age 55 to 74 years old
- Currently a smoker or have quit within the past 15 years
- Smoked at least a pack of cigarettes a day for 30+ years or two packs a day for 15 years
- No history of lung cancer themselves
An order for the CT lung screening must be placed by a patient’s primary care provider. To schedule an appointment with a BMC provider, please call 715-463-5353.
For more information about the CT lung cancer screening service, please visit BMC’s website at www.burnettmedicalcenter.com.