The best way to prevent death from cancer is early detection, smoking cessation and patient education. Community Medical Centers offers a variety of screenings and educational information about many different types of cancers. According to the Center for Disease Control (CDC) screening means looking for disease before symptoms occur.
Lung Cancer Screening Program
The Lung Cancer Screening Program helps find cancer at an early stage. This program through Community Regional Medical Center and UCSF Fresno is a designated lung cancer screening center by the American College of Radiology.
Screening tests are given to people when they have no cancer symptoms. This is important because by the time symptoms appear, cancer may have begun to spread. When abnormal tissue or cancer is found early, it may be easier to treat. If a screening test result is abnormal, then more tests are needed to find out if there is presence of cancer. These are called diagnostic tests. It’s important to know that if a doctor suggests a screening test, it does not necessarily mean a person has cancer.
The recommended test for screening of lung cancer requires a specific type of CT scan called low-dose computed tomography (AKA a low-dose CT scan, or LDCT.) In this test, a more sophisticated X-ray machine scans the chest using low doses of radiation. Lung screening using a LDCT scan is recommended only for people who are at high risk.
Who Should Be Screened? Do you qualify for screening in Lung Screening Program?
The U.S. Preventive Services Task Force recommends annual lung cancer screening with LDCT for people with the following risk factors:
- Adults aged 55 to 80 years
- Who have a 30 pack-year smoking history
- Currently smoke or have quit within the past 15 years
Also, the National Comprehensive Cancer Network guidelines recommend lung screening in people with the following risk factors:
- Adults older than 50 years
- Who have at least 20 pack-year smoking history with the following additional risk factors:
- Family history of lung cancer
- Personal history of any type of cancer
- COPD, pulmonary fibrosis
- Exposure to radon, silica, cadmium, asbestos, agent orange, arsenic, beryllium, chromium, diesel fumes and nickel
Screening should be stopped once a person has not smoked for 15 years or develops a health problem that substantially limits their life expectancy or ability or willingness to have curative lung surgery.
Once enrolled all patients are very carefully followed annually by the lung screening team throughout their screening period.
If you meet the qualifications, please call (559) 451-3698 or email CRMCLungScreening@CommunityMedical.org
to schedule an appointment.
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