Lung Cancer Screening Program

Lung cancer is the single leading cause of cancer death in the United States, killing more than 160,000 people each year. Early screening leads to a higher chance of finding cancer in its early stages. If found early, there are more treatment options for lung cancer, and survival rates are greatly improved.

Shifting the Curve to Early Lung Cancer Diagnosis

With innovative lung cancer screening and early detection, “we can significantly decrease lung cancer deaths,” says Dr. Kevin Kovitz.

Lung Cancer Screening

UI Health provides lung cancer screenings for people who:

  • Are 50 – 80 years old (50 – 77 years old with Medicare)

  • Currently smoke or who quit smoking less than 15 years ago

  • Have a smoking history of at least 20 pack-years (one pack-year is equivalent to smoking one pack of cigarettes a day for 20 years, or 10 cigarettes per day for 40 years)

Screening Saves Lives!

Lung cancer screening is done by a low-dose computer tomography (CT) scan, which is a painless procedure that takes just a few minutes.

How to Get Screened

Talk to your primary care physician or pulmonologist to see if you are a candidate for lung cancer screening. Your doctor will discuss the risks and benefits of screening, and if you qualify for screening, they will order a low-dose CT for lung screening for you.

Early Detection for Lung Cancer Saves Lives

Patients who get screened earlier with low-dose CT are 20% less likely to die from lung cancer than those who didn’t get screened. Low-dose CT screenings offer better cancer detection at earlier stages, when lung cancer is more easily treated. This test uses a low dose of radiation to make detailed pictures of the lungs, so a doctor can evaluate their health. During the CT, you will be asked to lie flat and still on an exam table and hold your arms over your head. Then, you will be asked to hold your breath for 5–10 seconds for the scan.

Smoking Cessation

Cigarette smoking causes 85% of lung cancer deaths in the United States. If you are a heavy smoker, screening cannot substitute for smoking cessation. We understand that quitting smoking is easier said than done, but you are not alone. The Tobacco Treatment Center at UI Health can help you find the best approach to stop your dependence on tobacco.

Lung Cancer Screening Insurance Information

The cost of the lung screening is covered by most insurance plans, including Medicare and Medicaid, if you are at high risk for lung cancer. If you meet the above criteria for screening, we will work with you on insurance precertification, if needed.

Contact the Lung Cancer Screening Program

For more information, please call our Lung Navigator at 312.996.5776.