Mercy Offers Lung Cancer Screening

June 19, 2015

Gina Null, APN, is Mercy's patient navigator

for the new lung cancer screening program.

FORT SMITH, Ark. – More people die annually of lung cancer than colon, breast and prostate cancer combined, but research shows that early detection can add years to a person’s life. Mercy Hospital Fort Smith is now offering low-dose CT screening –technology that can detect lung cancer in its earliest and most treatable stages. This screening is for smokers and former smokers who are concerned about lung cancer.

According to Gina Null, APN, and patient health navigator at Mercy, “The low-dose CT scan is quick, painless and has been proven to be three times more effective in detecting lung cancer than a standard chest X-ray.”

A low-dose CT scan uses multiple X-ray images of the chest that can detect abnormalities. There are no needles or injections. Patients simply lie down – for about one minute – on a table that slides into the center of the scanner. The effective radiation dose is less than the average person receives from background radiation in six months.

Those eligible for this screening:

  • Ages 55-80
  • Current smokers or former smokers who have quit within the last 15 years
  • In generally good health
  • No signs, symptoms or personal history of lung cancer
  • Smoked one pack of cigarettes per day for 30 years, two packs a day for 15 years, or equivalent

The screening is now available at Mercy Fort Smith for a minimal fee. To schedule an appointment or see if you qualify for the screening, call 479-314-LUNG (5864)

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