Older woman coughing into hand

Lung Cancer Screening and Pulmonary Nodule Program

St. Jude Medical Center
2259.0 miles away

Lung Cancer Screening and Pulmonary Nodule Program

St. Jude Medical Center

Lung cancer kills more Americans than any other cancer: with early detection and state-of-the-art treatment, it is a statistic we are at the forefront of changing.

Our multidisciplinary program offers expert evaluation, monitoring and treatment for individuals with lung nodules, as well as heavy smokers considered high risk for developing lung cancer. One of the few programs of its kind in Southern California, we bring together experts in thoracic surgery, pulmonology, radiology and oncology to offer patients:

  • Quick access to multidisciplinary assessment and evaluation
  • Today’s best evidence-based approaches to monitoring, including low-dose CT screening
  • Early and accurate diagnosis, while preventing unnecessary tests, procedures and surgeries

Current or former smokers, age 55-77, who have smoked the equivalent of a pack of cigarettes a day for 30 years—or those who have smoked a pack a day for 20 years and have an additional risk factor—face a dramatically higher risk of developing lung cancer or other lung diseases. (Additional risk factors include family history of lung cancer or exposure to asbestos, radon, arsenic or other carcinogenics.)

Low-dose CT screening can detect even small abnormalities and is considered the gold standard in finding lung cancer at its earliest, most curable stage. In addition to the latest generation CT imaging, we offer something else: the experience and expertise to accurately interpret and evaluate any findings and ensure the correct level of care. 

If you are or were a heavy smoker, please contact our thoracic nurse navigator at 714-446-5355 to schedule a screening counseling visit. Low-dose CT screening is a covered benefit by Medicare and all major health plans. Some plans may require a physician’s referral. If you don’t have a referring physician, please contact our nurse navigator to make an appointment with one of our lung physicians.

A pulmonary nodule is any “spot” in the lung that is less than 3 centimeters in diameter. While the vast majority of nodules are benign, some are early signs of lung cancer, requiring prompt testing and treatment. Our clinic is designed to thoroughly evaluate each nodule and determine what, if any, follow-up is necessary.

We are leaders in using evidence-based protocols to minimize unneeded testing or invasive procedures, offering patients exactly the right care at the right time.

For nodules that appear suspicious, we are one of the few centers in California to offer electromagnetic navigational bronchoscopy—a minimally-invasive diagnostic technology that uses GPS-like technology to locate and biopsy a pulmonary nodule without performing surgery or a needle biopsy. 

If you have been diagnosed with lung nodule, please contact our thoracic nurse navigator at 714-446-5355. Your diagnostic images will be evaluated by a multidisciplinary team and, if needed, an individualized plan of care developed that includes appropriate monitoring or treatment.

Our experts are part of the highly respected St. Jude Crosson Cancer Institute, so if a cancerous nodule is diagnosed, your care will move seamlessly from evaluation into today’s most effective treatment. 

From new advanced in radiotherapy to breakthroughs in immunology, our award-winning Crosson Cancer Institute offers a remarkable level of excellence. We are one of the few hospitals in the nation to offer minimally-invasive robotic removal of lung cancer, providing patients with a list of benefits that includes improved precision, faster recovery, and fewer complications. In fact, our expertise has made us into a nationally-recognized Center of Excellence—one of only four in the western United States.