House Calls

SUM 2017

House Calls Magazine is a quarterly publication that focuses on health and wellness. It includes a wide assortment of articles with topics on the latest health and wellness information, nutrition, safety, lifestyles, and more.

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WHAT TO EXPECT Currently, only those with a history of smoking and who are at high risk for lung cancer are eligible for the low-dose CT scan (see opposite page for specifics). When the scan first hit the scene in 2011, patients covered the cost (it's typically $150 per scan). In 2015, however, Medicare and the Affordable Care Act began covering it, significantly increasing access to the screening. The scan is offered at seven Roper St. Francis locations, and is often available for a next-day appointment with a referral from a provider. There's no need to avoid eating or drinking before the test, which takes about five minutes and is painless. After the scan, your provider will call you to discuss the results. If a lesion or suspect area is found, follow-up screenings may be scheduled, with frequency determined by the size of the nodule. If results are clear, there is no need to have additional scans more often than once a year. As more and more high-risk patients receive the preventative scan, the h o u s e c a l l s { summer 2017 } 37 Lowcountry may see an increased rate of lung cancer survival in the coming years, notes Dr. Kline. Spring Turner— Dr. Kline's patient who was diagnosed and cured of lung cancer last year—is doing her part to help make that happen. "I have a coworker who smokes a lot, so I asked if he had ever had a low-dose CT scan," Turner recounts. "I let him know it's really easy and that insurance covered it for me." Her coworker's test—like most—came back clear. In fact, an average of only one in 77 scans at Roper St. Francis discovers a malignant lesion. If cancer is found, it's important to remember that detection is the first step toward curing the disease. "People who get screened have a vastly greater survival rate than folks who are diagnosed after symptoms appear," says Dr. Kline. Of course, the best way to decrease your chance of developing lung cancer is to avoid smoking tobacco and exposure to second-hand smoke. However, if you have a history of smoking and meet the requirements, talk to your provider about the screening: it's a simple, smart test that can save your life. A person dies every 6 seconds from a tobacco-related disease. -Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) Cigarette smoking remains the #1 preventable cause of death and disease in the nation and accounts for one in every five deaths. -CDC In 2015, an estimated 15% of American adults smoked. -CDC Smokers die an average of 13 to 14 years earlier than nonsmokers. -U.S. Department of Health & Human Services Cigarette smoke contains thousands of chemicals, including at least 70 known carcinogens (cancer-causing compounds) like lead, arsenic, and formaldehyde. –American Cancer Society STAGGERING SMOKING STATS After receiving a low-dose CT lung scan through Roper St. Francis in March 2016, Mount Pleasant resident Spring Turner, 60, was diagnosed with lung cancer last April. Today, she is cancer free and back at her favorite activities, like walking pups Izzy and Rosie on Isle of Palms.

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