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Saved by the scan

If you smoke cigarettes, chances are that friends and family remind you that November, which is Lung Cancer Awareness Month is a great time to quit. We agree, but we also want you to know that there’s a low dose CT scan available at University Health that could save your life.

The American Cancer Society promotes the lung cancer screening through an effort called “Saved by the Scan”. At University Health, which is an academic medical center, a radiology resident physician worked alongside an attending physician to champion the screening process. That resident complied promising statistics during the program’s early success, statistics that showed patients doing well after doctors were able to find lung cancer in its early, more treatable, stages.

The Centers for Disease Control recommends you talk to your physician about screening if you meet the following criteria.

  • Have a 20 pack-year* or more smoking history, and
  • Smoke now or have quit within the past 15 years, and
  • Are between 50 and 80 years old.

*A pack-year is smoking an average of one pack of cigarettes per day for one year. For example, a person could have a 20 pack-year history by smoking one pack a day for 20 years or two packs a day for 10 years.

Again, the idea is that using a CT scan, a physician is able to detect lung cancer in its early stages. And this makes the disease much more treatable than if patients waited for symptoms.

Talk to your primary care physician or pulmonologist and if they say it’s right for you, click here for a $99 low dose scan from MDSave.