Addressing abnormalities of the lung

Lung nodules – small growths in the lung – are quite common. Many nodules are benign (non-cancerous); however, some need to be treated.

The team at the UCHealth Lung Nodule Clinic at Memorial Hospital includes a range of specialists, from pulmonologists to thoracic surgeons, who will work together to quickly determine how serious your condition is and whether treatment and what sort of follow-up might be necessary.

You can rest assured that the Lung Nodule Clinic exceeds the national benchmarks for diagnosing and treating newly found lung nodules.

What is a lung nodule?

A lung nodule is a spot on the lung that is identified on an X-ray or on a CT scan. Nodules appear on about one in every 500 chest X-rays. In many cases lung nodules are benign. Patients at the UCHealth Lung Nodule Clinic benefit from the highest-quality radiology and imaging services provided by Memorial Hospital.

Lung cancer risk factors

For patients who are considered at-risk based on their tobacco use, screening reduces lung cancer mortality by 20 percent, according to the National Lung Screening Trial.

You should consider lung cancer screening, if:

  • You are 55 to 77 years old.
  • You are a current smoker or a former smoker who quit less than 15 years ago.
  • You have a smoking history of at least 30 pack-years (one pack per day for 30 years, two packs a day for 15 years, etc.).

How lung cancer screening works

Now you can be screened for lung cancer through UCHealth. Knowing your status means you can take steps to treat or beat lung cancer, or have peace of mind knowing that you’re cancer-free.

Some frequently asked questions:

What is a screening? Screening is looking for a disease before a person shows any symptoms.

Why isn’t everyone screened? There are benefits but also risks to lung cancer screening. The specialists at UCHealth can review these risks and assist you in your decision to get screened, if you meet the criteria.

Is there a cost for screening? Most insurance carriers will approve a screening exam. UCHealth will preauthorize the exam with your insurance carrier, so you’ll know in advance whether you will have a fee.

How is a lung cancer screening performed? A low-dose chest CT scan gives a detailed picture of the lungs. This test does not require any prior preparation. You will lie on a table with your arms above your head, and the table will slide into the CT scanner.

Cancer care support

Our patients can also receive extensive support during their cancer treatment journey from Memorial’s nurse navigators, social workers, financial counselors, and many others.