Lung cancer is one of the most preventable cancers. The best prevention is to quit smoking. Screening for lung cancer can also reduce your risk, and the Lung Cancer Screening Clinic is a special clinic designed to follow the recommendations from the US Preventive Services Task Force to screen high risk patients.
Watch the video: Dr. Ella Kazerooni and Dr. Douglas Arenberg discuss the significance of screening for lung cancer among those at high risk for the disease.
Who Can Benefit from Lung Cancer Screening?
Recent research has shown that people aged 55-80 who are current or former (within 15 years) smokers with at least 30 pack years (1 pack of cigarettes a day for 30 years) of exposure can reduce their chances of dying from lung cancer by undergoing a process of screening.
What Does the Screening Include?
The Screening Clinic process includes an initial low dose CT scan, which can be followed by an office visit, during which the results will be reviewed with you. You will need to have an additional two scans in consecutive years, for a total of 3 scans in 3 years. It is VERY important to understand that screening for lung cancer is a process, not a single test, so achieving the greatest reduction in your risk of dying from lung cancer requires that you be screened over these three CT scans, and follow up on any abnormalities.
Will My Insurance Cover the Cost?
For now, insurance companies and Medicare do not cover this as a benefit. The USPSTF has recommended screening at a level that (under the affordable care act) will eventually lead to coverage of screening for all beneficiaries. Until then the first screening CT scan will have an initial out-of-pocket cost. If it comes back clear, subsequent scans will also have a cost involved until coverage is provided by your insurer. If there is a nodule found, your future scans will be covered by your health insurance. The office visits should be covered by your insurance. At this office visit you will also be provided with resources for smoking cessation if you have not already stopped. It is important to understand that less than 95% of the abnormalities found on lung cancer screening CT scans are not lung cancer. It is for this reason that we feel it is important to undergo screening under the guidance of an expert, to minimize the performance of invasive tests on abnormalities that are likely benign.
Who Is Eligible for the Clinic?
Not everyone who meets the initial criteria will be eligible for the clinic. Our team will help guide you as to whether screening can benefit you or not. We may also be able to direct you to clinical trials that are appropriate for your concerns or your condition. Please fill out the Lung Cancer Screening Questionnaire form, save it using the "Save As" command and then email it to the coordinator as an attachment, or call us at (248) 305-4400.
Our Location and Phone
Address: Northville Health Center, 39901 Traditions Drive, Northville, MI 48168
Phone: (248) 305-4400