Lung Cancer: Screening Program Detects Cancer Early | Loyola Medicine
Wednesday, November 16, 2016

Loyola Medicine’s Lung Cancer Screening Program Detects Cancer in Early Stages

MAYWOOD, IL – On the eve of the annual Great American Smokeout, Loyola Medicine wants to remind smokers that the key to surviving lung cancer is to detect it early, when it is most treatable.

Since Loyola began offering CT lung cancer screening to people at high risk, nearly 1,000 smokers have been screened and early-stage lung cancer was found in 15 smokers before they experienced symptoms.

Of course, the best way to prevent lung cancer and many other health problems is to not take up smoking, or quit if you have started. Many smokers will try quitting on Thursday, November 17 during the annual Great American Smokeout.

“Quitting smoking is the single most important step a smoker can take to improving the length and quality of life,” said Loyola family physician Amy Buchanan, MD. “Smoking is addictive and the habit can be tough to overcome but there are plenty of things smokers can do to improve their chances of successfully quitting, such as setting a quit date and not getting discouraged if you slip up.”

Loyola is a strong advocate for tobacco cessation and programs that prevent young people from ever taking up the habit. For example, Loyola supports Illinois Senate Bill 3011, known as Tobacco 21, which would increase the smoking age in Illinois from 18 to 21. Nearly nine of out of 10 smokers start before they turn 18, according to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control.

For longtime smokers, it’s critical to get screened early for lung cancer. Following American Cancer Society guidelines, Loyola offers lung cancer screening for people aged 55 to 77 who are in fairly good health, have smoked the equivalent of at least a pack a day for 30 years or more or have quit within the past 15 years.

Loyola performs the gold standard test of lung cancer screening: low-dose spiral CT scan (LDCT scan). An X-ray machine scans the body in a spiral path, and a computer produces highly detailed pictures of the lungs. The procedure uses low-dose radiation and is not recommended for people who are at average risk for lung cancer.

Lung cancer screenings are available at the Loyola Center for Health at Burr Ridge, Loyola Center for Health at Oakbrook Terrace and the Loyola Outpatient Center on Loyola’s main campus in Maywood.

About Loyola Medicine and Trinity Health

Loyola Medicine, a member of Trinity Health, is a quaternary care system based in the western suburbs of Chicago that includes Loyola University Medical Center (LUMC), Gottlieb Memorial Hospital, MacNeal Hospital and convenient locations offering primary and specialty care services from 1,877 physicians throughout Cook, Will and DuPage counties. LUMC is a 547-licensed-bed hospital in Maywood that includes the William G. and Mary A. Ryan Center for Heart & Vascular Medicine, the Cardinal Bernardin Cancer Center, a Level 1 trauma center, Illinois's largest burn center, a certified comprehensive stroke center and a children’s hospital. Having delivered compassionate care for over 50 years, Loyola also trains the next generation of caregivers through its teaching affiliation with Loyola University Chicago’s Stritch School of Medicine and Marcella Niehoff School of Nursing. Gottlieb is a 247-licensed-bed community hospital in Melrose Park with 150 physician offices, an adult day care program, the Gottlieb Center for Fitness, the Loyola Center for Metabolic Surgery and Bariatric Care and the Loyola Cancer Care & Research at the Marjorie G. Weinberg Cancer Center at Melrose Park. MacNeal Hospital is a 374-bed teaching hospital in Berwyn with advanced inpatient and outpatient medical, surgical and psychiatric services, advanced diagnostics and treatments. MacNeal has a 12-bed acute rehabilitation unit, a 25-bed inpatient skilled nursing facility, and a 68-bed behavioral health program and community clinics. MacNeal has provided quality, patient-centered care to the near west suburbs since 1919.

Trinity Health is one of the largest multi-institutional Catholic healthcare systems in the nation, serving diverse communities that include more than 30 million people across 22 states. Trinity Health includes 94 hospitals, as well as 109 continuing care locations that include PACE programs, senior living facilities and home care and hospice services. Its continuing care programs provide nearly 2.5 million visits annually. Based in Livonia, Mich., and with annual operating revenues of $18.3 billion and assets of $26.2 billion, the organization returns $1.1 billion to its communities annually in the form of charity care and other community benefit programs. Trinity employs about 133,000 colleagues, including 7,800 employed physicians and clinicians. Committed to those who are poor and underserved in its communities, Trinity is known for its focus on the country's aging population. As a single, unified ministry, the organization is the innovator of Senior Emergency Departments, the largest not-for-profit provider of home health care services—ranked by number of visits—in the nation, as well as the nation’s leading provider of PACE (Program of All Inclusive Care for the Elderly) based on the number of available programs.