Lung Cancer Screening and Risk Reduction

Lung Cancer is Preventable and Treatable

Watch a video featuring Dr. Rachel Sanborn from Providence Cancer Institute in Portland, Oregon, about lung cancer causes, symptoms, treatments and research.

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When people who have no symptoms are tested to detect disease, that process is called “screening".

  • Screening for cancer increases the chance of being diagnosed at an early stage.
  • Early stage diagnosis is associated with much higher cure rates.
  • The only proven effective way to screen for lung cancer is low-dose computed tomography (also called a low-dose CT scan, or LDCT).

If you are a current or former smoker, your risk of developing lung cancer may be up to 25 times higher than someone who never smoked.

If you are considering about getting screened, talk to your primary care doctor to make this informed decision together. It is important to discuss the possible benefits and risks of screening with your doctor.

Providence screening criteria:

  • Adults between 50-80 years old and
  • Current smoker or one who has quit smoking within the past 15 years and
  • Person with a greater than or equal to 20 pack-year smoking history (Example: Smoking 1 pack per day x 20 years = 20 pack years; smoking 2 packs per day x 10 years = 20 pack years) and
  • Person who has not had a CT Chest scan within the past 12 months

Screening should be discontinued once a person has not smoked for more than 15 years or develops a health problem that substantially limits life expectancy or the ability or willingness to have curative lung surgery.

At Providence Cancer Institute:

  • We use low-dose CT scans, which results in less radiation exposure than standard CT imaging.
  • We comply with all comprehensive standards based on best practices for controlling screening quality, radiation dose and diagnostic procedures.
  • Providence has been designated a Lung Cancer Screening Center of Excellence by Lung Cancer Alliance, which means it has committed to following specific protocols and core best practices to ensure the highest quality of screening and follow up care.
  • We work with a multidisciplinary clinical team to follow patients from screening to diagnosis and disease management based on best practices.

Contact your primary care doctor to learn more about lung cancer screening. The doctor can help to determine whether lung cancer screening is right for you. If you meet the screening criteria, your doctor will submit a lung cancer screening order on your behalf for scheduling.

Use this lung cancer screening decision aid to determine if screening is right for you.