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Lung Cancer Prevention & Care

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Lung Cancer Prevention and Care

Our goal at the Georgia Cancer Center is to balance exceptional outcomes with high quality of life and optimum lung function.

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What is Lung Cancer?

Lung cancer is a type of cancer that develops in the lungs, affecting both men and women. Lung cancer is the number-one cancer in Georgia and the nation. About 90 percent of all lung cancers are related to smoking and tobacco use. It’s estimated that one in nine smokers will eventually develop lung cancer.

Our goal at the Georgia Cancer Center is to balance exceptional outcomes with high quality of life and optimum lung function.

The Thoracic Multidisciplinary Team provides personalized care for every type and stage of lung cancer and other cancers in the chest, including:

  • Lungs
  • Trachea
  • Chest wall
  • Pericardium
  • Pulmonary system
  • Mesothelioma
  • Thymomas

Causes of Lung Cancer

Common causes of lung cancer include:

  • Smoking cigarettes or cigars
  • Secondhand smoke
  • Asbestos exposure
  • Radon gas exposure
  • Genetic predisposition

Lung Cancer Symptoms

Individuals with lung cancer can exhibit the following symptoms:

  • Chronic cough
  • Coughing up blood
  • Loss of voice
  • Chronic chest pain
  • Unexplained weight loss or loss of appetite
  • Shortness of breath
  • Fatigue
  • Wheezing

Lung cancer and other thoracic cancers  are often complex and challenging cancers that may require multiple types of treatment.

In order to receive the most successful treatment, it is important to diagnose and stage lung cancer and other thoracic cancers quickly and precisely. The Georgia Cancer Center offers the most advanced diagnostic methods and tools including:

  • Accurate diagnosis with most-advanced technology
  • PET (positron emission tomography) scans
  • High-resolution CT (computed tomography) scans
  • Endobronchial and esophageal ultrasound
  • Advanced bronchoscopic imaging
  • Video-assisted thoracoscopic surgery (VATS)

 

The NCI-sponsored National Lung Screening Trial recently confirmed that screening individuals at high risk for lung cancer with an annual low-dose CT (LDCT) of the chest, saves lives. Check the criteria below to see if you qualify.

Screening Criteria

Group 1:

  • 55-80 years old
  • Currently a smoker or have quit within the past 15 years
  • Smoked at least a pack of cigarettes a day for 30+ years.
  • This includes people who still smoke or have quit within the past 15 years

Group 2:

  • 50−80 years old
  • Smoked at least a pack of cigarettes a day for 20+ years
  • Have at least one of the following additional lung cancer risks:
    • Personal cancer history (lung, head and neck, lymphoma)
    • Family history - parent, sibling or child - of lung cancer
    • Emphysema or chronic bronchitis
    • Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD)
    • Long term exposure to asbestos
    • Asbestos-related lung disease or pulmonary asbestosis
    • Long term exposure to silica, cadmium, arsenic, beryllium, , chromium, diesel fumes, nickel, radon, uranium or coal smoke and soot

To Schedule a Screening or Get More Information

Please call (706) 721-4726 between the hours of 8:30 a.m. and 4:30 p.m., Monday through Friday or email lung@augusta.edu.

Background

The National Lung Screening Trial (NLST), a large, National Cancer Institute (NCI)-sponsored, randomized controlled trial, recently confirmed that screening individuals at high risk for lung cancer with an annual low-dose CT (LDCT) of the chest, saves lives.

In the NLST:

  • One in 100 high-risk persons enrolled in the study were found to have lung cancer on the first screening exam.
  • One life was saved for every 320 high-risk persons screened with LDCT over two years (three screens), resulting in a 20 percent lung cancer-specific mortality benefit versus annual chest radiography.

As a result of the NLST findings, the National Comprehensive Cancer Network (NCCN) recommends that high-risk individuals undergo annual LDCT screening. The NCCN defined two groups at high risk for lung cancer (above).

At this time, most private insurers and the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) do not reimburse for LDCT lung screening, and the majority of hospitals charge a self-pay for this exam. In order to increase accessibility of lung screening to all people at high risk, Augusta University Medical Center is currently offering FREE LDCT lung screening to individuals who meet the established NCCN high-risk criteria.

Cancer care can be complex, but the thoracic/lung cancer team makes it simple with the region’s only multidisciplinary clinic for cancers affecting the lung cancer.

We offer the most advanced treatment options for thoracic cancers including:

  • Less-invasive surgical techniques
  • Proton therapy with the only pencil scanning beam capability in the United States
  • Intensity-modulated radiation therapy (IMRT)
  • Four-dimensional radiation therapy
  • Image-guided radiation therapy
  • Stereotactic radiation therapy
  • Techniques to help save lung function
  • Targeted therapies
  • Less-invasive surgery, stereotactic radiotherapy, intensity-modulated radiotherapy (IMRT) and proton therapy
  • Clinical trials, including new chemotherapy agents, targeted therapies, antibodies, and gene therapy

Additional services unique your needs:

  • Nutritional counseling
  • Image Boutique, offering supplies to help survivors look and feel their best
  • Mental and spiritual health counseling
  • Symptom management
  • Tobacco cessation clinic
 

Our Providers

Augusta University Medical Center specialists provide care and support throughout your entire healthcare journey.

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