Lung cancer is the most common cancer treated at Baptist Health Paducah, as well as the most common cancer in both men and women in the U.S. Lung cancer causes more death than the next three most common cancers (colon, breast, prostate) combined, according to the American Lung Association.
Most lung cancer is caused by smoking and some occupational hazards, but it can also be found in people who have never smoked.
Signs and symptoms can include:
- A chronic cough
- Coughing up blood
- Shortness of breath
- Chest pain
- Weight loss
- Bone pain
Survival rates for lung cancer depend on how early the illness is diagnosed, but symptoms usually only occur in advanced stages. Therefore, it is critical for people at high risk to be screened before symptoms occur.
People at high risk should be screened
More than 80 percent of lung cancers have a chance of being cured, if detected early. The low-dose lung CT screening at Baptist Health Paducah can give peace of mind to people who may be at a higher risk for lung cancer and meet these criteria:
- Current or former heavy smokers
- 55 to 80 years old
- Less than 15 years since quitting smoking
It includes a CT scan and a same-day consultation with a cardiovascular specialist.
The cost is $185. Check with your private insurance carrier to see if your plan covers this cost. Also, those covered by Medicare should know that CMS (Centers for Medicare & Medicaid) has a pending proposal to cover the cost for some who meet certain guidelines.
You can see if you meet the criteria by completing an online form at www.BaptistHealthPaducah.com/lung or phoning Baptist Health Line at 270.575.2918. You will be asked to provide your name, age, tobacco smoking history and contact information.
- Oncologist Yashpal Modi, MD