Early Detection Can Lead to Cure

Not all lung cancers are caused by smoking. In women, up to 20% of lung cancers are found in patients who never smoked. Because of inadequate screening, most lung cancers are caught late—too late. This accounts for about 150,000 deaths in the US annually.

CT scans can detect tumors in the lung fields small than a 1 cm—the size usually detectable by xray. Additionally, CT scanning isn’t fooled when tumors appear behind the heart (see picture) or peripherally.

No evidenced based guidelines exist for screening adults for lung cancer, although studies are currently underway looking at CT scans for early detection. It is suspected that early detection may lead to earlier treatment and a better prognosis.

EBCT lung scans provide the same resolution as conventional CT scans, but use only a fraction of the radiation. This is critically important as screening for lung cancer, especially in higher risk patients, may be required as often as every year. Over time the risks repeated high radiation dose CT scnners may outweigh the benefits they provide.
While screening in and of itself is not a cure, the peace of mind a reliable test can offer is often worth it’s weight in gold.

If you are a smoker, have had extensive second-hand smoke or chemical exposure, or if you are a patient with a family history of lung cancer, consider talking to your doctor about screening tests such as low radiation CT scans for lung cancers.