Piedmont Macon bringing awareness to Lung Cancer

Piedmont Macon has offered low dose CT lung screening to patients for several years now. Doctors with the hospital say it has helped to decrease lung cancer deaths by up to 20 percent.

MACON, Georgia(41NBC/WMGT)— Lung Cancer is the leading cause of death compared to other cancers. That’s why Piedmont Macon is hoping to save lives by bringing awareness to the disease.

November is lung cancer awareness month, and Piedmont Macon is hoping to get the word out.

“The problem with lung cancer is it doesn’t give people symptoms until it gets very late in the disease as in not curable, so for years we’ve been trying to look for a way to go ahead and detect it early,” said Dr. Norman Hetzler, Chief of Cardiothoracic Vascular surgery.

Piedmont Macon has offered low dose CT lung screening to patients for several years now. Doctors with the hospital say it has helped to decrease lung cancer deaths by up to 20 percent.

Kristen West, a CT Technologist with the hospital, says the process to get a scan done is simple.

“It just takes about 3 minutes for the actual scan, so once they get up here, we do the scan really quick, just in and out here three times, patient has to hold their breath a few times and that’s pretty much it.”

According to West, she sees patients who are between 50 to 77-years-old. She also says the hospital hosts lung cancer screening events.

“We block our regular schedule and it’s just the low dose lung cancer screenings all day long and we see a lot of people through that and I think that helps to get the word out.”

Dr. Hetzler says there are several factors that can lead to a diagnoses of lung cancer people should be aware of.

“Smoking is the big one, the other thing that we’re staring to see in younger and younger people is vaping.”

If you have any questions about the low dose CT lung screening, contact Piedmont Macon hospital.

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