Low Dose CT Lung Screening

ACR-lung-cancerAt Johnston Health, we strive to provide the latest imaging technology and procedures. We are accredited in Low Dose Computed Tomography (LDCT) Lung Screenings through the American College of Radiology.

Lung Cancer is one of the leading cancer killers in America; claiming more lives than colorectal, breast, pancreatic and prostate cancer combined. Without early detection screening, over 95% of lung cancer patients eventually die from the disease, usually within a few years of diagnosis. Annual Low Dose CT Lung Screenings can aid in finding lung cancers in their earliest stages, when up to 90% can be cured. Our certified technologist will provide you with the best possible care during your exam.

According to the American Cancer Society, every 2.5 minutes someone in the United States is diagnosed with lung cancer, every 3 minutes someone will die from lung cancer, 60% of people diagnosed with lung cancer will die within one year, and 75% of people diagnosed will die within 2 years

A randomized clinical trial conducted by the American College of Radiology Imaging Network, released its results in November 2010 that showed screening current and former heavy smokers with computed tomography (CT) scans, reduced their risk of dying from lung cancer by approximately 20%. With 100 million smokers and ex-smokers in the United States and over 160,000 Americans dying early from lung cancer, LDCT Screenings could potentially save thousands of lives annually by catching tumors at an even earlier, more treatable stage than chest x-rays.

A CT scan can detect tumors significantly smaller than a conventional chest x-ray. CT Lung Screenings can also provide information to physicians on cardiovascular disease, emphysema, and other pulmonary diseases.

What is LDCT?

The Low Dose CT Lung Screening is an exam with the ability to detect lung cancer in its earliest stages when it is most treatable. It consists of a low dose, non-contrasted CT that uses X-rays (minimized radiation exposure) to scan the entire chest in about five to ten seconds during a single breath hold. The exam takes about 15 minutes in its entirety to complete.

Who Can Benefit From a LDCT?

This exam is for patients that are at high risk for lung cancer. Patients at high risk possess the following characteristics and should participate in a shared decision conversation with their physician.

  • Individuals 55-77 years of age
  • No signs or symptoms of lung cancer
  • At least a 30 pack-year smoking history- One pack-year is equal to one pack of 20 cigarettes smoked each and every day for one year. This is calculated by the number of packs per day multiplied by the number of years as a smoker.
  • Current smokers or former smokers who quit within the last 15 years, AND
  • Receives a written order for LDCT lung screening from your physician

If you would like to find out if you are a candidate for CT Lung Cancer Screening, you can use the Lung Cancer Risk Calculator at http://www.shouldiscreen.com/ .

For more information about smoking cessation, click here.

Low Dose CT Lung Screening Insurance Coverage

The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) determined on February 5, 2015 that the evidence is sufficient to add a lung cancer screening counseling and shared decision making visit, and for appropriate beneficiaries, annual screening for lung cancer with low dose computed tomography (LDCT), as an additional preventive service benefit under the Medicare program only if all of the specified criteria are met.

Some insurance companies are beginning to cover Low Dose CT Lung Screening exams if you meet specific criteria. Check with your insurance carrier to see if it is a covered benefit with your specific policy. If Low Dose CT Lung Screening is not covered by your plan, ask about our self-pay pricing.

For Physicians

All Patients who meet the criteria and are interested in LDCT will be required to have the Physician’s Order Form (see below) completed in full.

Physician Order Form

Patient Questionnaire