The first thing to understand is this: simply because your doctor screens you for Lung Cancer, this in and of itself, does not mean that you have or may have Lung Cancer.
Lung Cancer Screenings are just that. A screening, or non-invasive test, to find and detect lung disease early.
This is akin to how women are screened for Breast Cancer and it is recommended for men to be screened for Prostate Cancer. Lung Cancer Screenings can help your doctor diagnose an issue even when symptoms of Lung Cancer and signs of Lung Cancer are not externally present.
So how do you screen for lung cancer?
There is really only one method to detect early signs of Lung Cancer. This is via a CT scan. More specifically, for Lung Cancer Screenings, a low-dose spiral (or helical) CT (Computed Tomography) scan (LDCT) of the chest is conducted.
A LDCT scan uses a series of x-rays to display the size, location, and shape of any abnormalities in your chest. LDCT scans are very sensitive and can show both cancerous and non-cancerous areas. Using the information gathered, the doctors of Ocala Lung and Critical Care would determine if the results warrant any further followup such as a Lung Biopsy or more frequent screenings.
Do you have to be a smoker to get Lung Cancer?
Many people believe since they are not, or were not, “smokers” than they do not need to obtain a Lung Screening.
This is a common myth.
Cancer in and of itself has many environmental triggers. These triggers exist externally as well as internally and include contributors such as individual genetic susceptibility. Besides first hand and second hand, or passive smoke; air pollution, Radon, and Asbestos are all known causes of Lung Cancer.
Do Lung Cancer Symptoms differ in Women and Men?
The short answer is “yes”. The signs of Lung Cancer in men and women can differ. It is important for both genders to gain a baseline level of Lung Cancer awareness.
While Breast Cancer Awareness month is in November of each year in the United States, Lung Cancer Awareness has its own month as well! In fact, Lung Cancer Awareness month saddles the same month as the growing Movember which aims to raise awareness about men’s health issues: November is Lung Cancer Awareness Month!
Lung Cancer Awareness has help people become familiar with common Lung Cancer symptoms found in both sexes.
These may include:
- Repeated lung infections such as bronchitis or pneumonia
- Shortness of breath
- A persistent cough
- Coughing up blood
Despite these commonalities there are differences between Lung Cancer Symptoms in Women and men.
Lung Cancer Symptoms in Women
The signs of Lung Cancer in Women are often less pronounced and may include persistent shortness of breath and growing fatigue.
Lung Cancer Symptoms in Men
Lung Cancer Symptoms in Men are often more obvious, such as chronic coughing,
What can I do to help my Lung Cancer Screening return favorable?
While Ocala Lung and Critical care would love to tell you new information about the Fountain of Youth, the reality is that our body is a system. When one part of the system is not functioning at its optimum, caused by depravity (ie of nutrition) or “manufacture defects” (heredity), other parts of the system as a whole can be negatively impacted.
While there has been a large effort in the medical and agricultural arenas over the last few years to redefine and modernize the food pyramid, which includes changing its shape to a plate, despite all the debate one thing everyone agrees on is the need for more whole fruits and vegetables in the typical American diet.
Ocala Lung and Critical Care encourages you to visit Cancer.org’s great resource on Preventing Cancer with Nutrition.