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Naval Medical Center San Diego Begins High-Tech Lung Cancer Screenings (Video)

Photo credit: KGO-TV

Low dose CT scan

Naval Medical Center San Diego has started offering cutting-edge lung cancer screenings as a way to catch the deadly disease in its early stages.

Dr. Gilbert Boswell, cardiothoracic radiologist at the medical center, explained to NMCSD public affairs:

"There's new scientific evidence that has been published which shows there's great value in high-risk patients screening for lung cancer with a low dose CT (computed tomography) scan. When it's at its earliest stage, we can do something and dramatically improve survival."

The low dose CT scan allows doctors to see malignant nodules growing in the lungs much earlier than they would be able to with a traditional x-ray

A government health panel recently recommended low dose CT screenings for smokers, and those who used to smoke, who are between the ages of 55 and 80.

NMCSD's lung cancer screening program also involves teaching patients who smoke about the importance of quitting the deadly habit. According to Dr. Boswell:

"The average smoker is taking 10 to 12 years off his life. Not just the cost of cigarettes, but the cost of health care as they become sick and the burden on their families when they die at a young age is significant."

Qualifying patients at NMCSD must be between the ages of 55 and 79, be an active or former smoker, and discuss their desire to be screened with their primary care manager.

KGO-TV recently did a feature about how the new high-tech, low dose CT scan saved a woman's life:

Low Dose CT Scan

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