New technology allows for noninvasive, painless lung cancer screening

RAPID CITY, S.D. — Lung cancer kills more than 150,000 Americans every year, and when it’s diagnosed it has a big impact on survival.

This Lung Cancer Awareness Month, the American Lung Association has partnered up with the AD Council to encourage those at particular risk to get screened using a relatively new, noninvasive and painless technology.

“By the time you see the symptoms, it may be too late,” said a new PSA, targeting a group at high risk for lung cancer— former smokers, 55 and older.

“If you smoked, get scanned.”

“If everybody who qualified got this scan, it would save about 48,000 lives a year.”

According to the American Lung Association, the low dose CT scan detects lung cancer in the early stages, often before there are any symptoms, and when the disease is more treatable.

“There are people watching this right now who qualify for lung screening and some of whom have an early stage lung cancer, but have no idea because there are no symptoms,” said Dr. Jacob Sands, Dana-Farber Cancer Institute.

Lung cancer is the leading cause of cancer deaths, less than 20% of those diagnosed are alive five years. But for the 16% whose cases are caught early, the survival rate improves dramatically.

“I had the scan done last April. April 2018. In May 2018, I had surgery for stage 1 cancer,” said Milli Wilson, cancer survivor

Milli Wilson is cancer free today, and credits that early detection scan.

“It’s not painful. It’s not invasive and it can save your life. It defiantly saved mine, “said Wilson.

Now, she and health experts are encouraging former smokers to take an online quiz to determine if they qualify for the scan.

A couple quick questions that may save a life.

Dr. Sands says insurance companies should cover the cost of the screening. To take the online quiz, visit


Categories: National News