More States in Need of LDCT Screening Centers

As opposed to cancers like leukemia and prostate, lung cancer is most often caused by lifestyle choices such as smoking cigarettes, other tobacco products or working in areas where carcinogen-filled smoke is present.

There has been an increase in advertising and lobbying for anti-tobacco campaigns. In addition, there are more than a few organizations now attempting to stop potential smokers in their youth before they pick up the habit. Thanks to these efforts and increased study on the connection between smoking and lung cancer, the rates of lung cancer in the U.S. have decreased considerably.

In hopes of combating the lung cancer statistics, the American College of Radiology and the American Cancer Society have teamed up to offer certification and accreditation to different facilities around the country that have met the strict informative, functional, and practicing ways that contribute to increased knowledge and prevention of lung cancer.

This initiative makes states more competitive in their efforts toward eradicating lung cancer, especially in states where there are high numbers of diagnosis. Medical imaging communities have done studies on the effectiveness of these centers throughout the country by first surveying how many are currently in operation. The survey showed that “nationwide, each state, including Washington DC, had a mean of four screening centers; however, 11 states had no screening centers identified. There was an average of 0.3 screening centers per 100,000 people aged 55 to 79. Among the states with the best capacity of LDCT screening centers were Washington, DC, Connecticut, Virginia, Colorado, and Maryland.”

The areas that need improvement are states like Mississippi, Arkansas, Oklahoma, Louisiana, West Virginia, and Missouri because they have some of the highest prevalence of lung cancer. Fortunately for New Orleans area residents, Doctors Imaging now offers the screenings.

Low-Dose CTs have been shown to be one of the best measures taken in early diagnosis of lung cancer. Because of the aggressive nature of lung cancer and the rarity of lung transplants, the earlier lung cancer is diagnosed, the sooner treatment can begin and the better the chances of survival are. CT scans (computed tomography) use X-ray capabilities to examine the internal structures of the body. CTs are the preferred imaging tool when searching for the presence of lung cancer. Lungs are made up of tissues, blood vessels, and nerves. Because CT imaging can produce cross-sectional images of the body’s tissue, CTs can see through bone and see the lungs from several angles, reassuring the patient that their scan is thorough.

Some may be hesitant to book an appointment for a lung cancer screening because they are worried about pain from the procedure or the possibility of radiation exposure. Please know that CT scans are completely non-invasive and the average procedure takes no more than 30 minutes. The CT machines are calibrated so that the radiation used to highlight the internal organs is an extremely low dose, about as much natural radiation a person experiences during a year. Even more beneficial is that your results will be ready and shared with your practicing physician on the same day. Please keep in mind that your doctor may need sufficient time to review the results of your exam.

If you believe that you have a possibility of developing lung cancer or you are a former or current smoker over the age of 50, please consider coming to Doctors Imaging for a lung cancer screening test. Our machines are state-of-the-art. And our friendly and experienced staff will help you with your imaging questions and concerns. Please review our CT Scan Page to learn preparations and common questions or call our offices at 504-883-8111.

Lung Cancer Detection in Louisiana Made Easy

Lung cancer is a devastating condition to suffer. There are as many as 228,000 new cases of lung cancer to be diagnosed in 2019 and as almost 142,000 people will die from lung cancer-related complications. This translates to about 1 in 15 men and 1 in 17 women will be likely to develop lung cancer. You can see that lung cancer statistics in the United States are alarming, which is why Louisiana doctors are committed to finding innovative ways and techniques to both detect and treat lung cancer.

As a patient, the symptoms of lung and or bronchi cancer can be difficult to see at first. Symptoms of lung cancer could be can be innocuous things like a cough that won’t seem to go away, chest pain with deep breathing or coughing, shortness of breath, feeling tired and weak or hoarseness in the voice. As you can see from this symptom list, these symptoms could be a bad chest cold. That is why lung cancer diagnoses are made when cancer has become serious or terminal because people are not trained to recognize the signs.

Like most cancers, there can be one reason or several reasons why someone develops cancer. Cigarette or tobacco smoking is the most common cause of lung cancer. The Center for Disease Control has named smoking as “the number one risk factor for lung cancer” linking the habit to 80-90% of lung cancer diagnoses. Even if you are not a smoker, working or living around secondhand smoke can lead to lung cancer. Cigarette smoke is loaded with carcinogens and other toxic chemicals like tar, nicotine and carbon monoxide that can develop into lung cancer without ever even smoking a cigarette. Other risk factors for lung cancer include radon exposure, a naturally occurring gas that can be trapped in homes and buildings, that rises from the ground. You can have your home or office tested for radon levels and the EPA has a set of guidelines for lowering the radon levels in your dwelling. Other risk factors for lung cancer include family history or genetic issues as well as exposure to toxic substances like asbestos and chromium.

Louisiana is one state in particular that has a high instance of lung cancer. 68 per 100,000 residents have lung cancer and 51 per 100,000 die every year from the condition in Louisiana alone. With statistics like this, it is lucky that lung cancer detection in Louisiana has been made easier and more advanced with the help of local facilities like Doctors Imaging.

If you think that you may have lung cancer or would like to set up an appointment to discuss preventative measures, please contact Doctors Imaging in Metairie at 504-883-8111 Monday through Friday from 8:30 AM to 5 PM.

What Should Patients Expect During a Low-Dose CT-Scan?

CT scans are used by doctors in order to create detailed cross-sectional images of the internal tissues and organs. By using the lowest possible dose of radiation in combination with computer technology, doctors can give patients clear and accurate diagnoses. For those who have never had this particular imaging procedure performed, this preview might help calm your fears or concerns.

What Is a Low-Dose CT Scan?

CT scans are used by doctors in order to create detailed cross-sectional images of the internal tissues and organs.A CT scan uses a combination of X-rays and computer technology in order to create images. X-rays use a small amount of radiation in order to show the body’s internal structures and produce images. On average, Americans are exposed to 3.1 mSv of radiation annually. CT scans use a slightly higher amount than that and qualified radiologists use the lowest possible dosage based on the size of a patient.

What Happens During the Exam?

CT scanners have the appearance of a tube with a spinning detector that collects the images your radiologist will use. For some procedures, the radiologist may ask that you abstain from eating for one or more hours prior to your examination.

Your CT scan will proceed as follows:

  1. While lying on your back,  a table will move your body slowly, feet-first, through the machine.
  2. If needed, your doctor may request contrast  for your CT scan procedure. Contrast is a substance that is used during imaging procedures to better understand your medical condition. Contrast material will be administered through an IV or by drinking a flavored substance. Some patients mention an itching or cooling sensation near the injection site or a slightly metallic taste, but it is still relatively safe and painless.
  3. As you are moved through the machine, your technologist will be able to see, hear and speak to you.

The images and report are created after the procedure is performed, and you and your personal doctor can review the results  together to determine your treatment options.

You should inform your doctor if you have medication allergies or an allergy to iodine. You should also let your doctor know if you suffer from diabetes or any heart, thyroid or kidney conditions as contrast material may sometimes cause an adverse reaction in patients with these conditions. Otherwise, CT scans are non-invasive and painless and can provide incredibly useful information for your doctors to use in providing the best treatment options for you.

Doctors Imaging is now offering low-dose CT lung cancer screenings, recommended annually for those at high risk for lung cancer, for the low cost of just $99. Lung screening is performed without contrast.  To schedule your appointment, use our online appointment form or call 504-883-8111.

Stop Smoking and Get Whole Body Benefits

The benefits after you stop smoking begin immediately and they are numerous.
Quitting any addiction is a difficult task. Addiction is a multi-layered process in which there is no quick fix, one magic pill or medicine that will ease the symptoms of withdrawal or the intense cravings. But the benefits after you stop smoking begin immediately and they are numerous.

New Tastes

When you smoke a cigarette, you are inhaling hot, carcinogen-filled smoke. Cigarettes contain as many as 4,000 chemical additives and all of these dangerous ingredients scald the surface of the tongue where your taste buds are. This leads to a loss of tasting sensitivity and taste bud regeneration which is why smokers often do not have the same perception of things like bitterness and sweetness. Upon quitting smoking, many people report the way food tastes different because of the new taste buds that have grown.

Better Skin

Smoking does not just cause harm the internal organs, it wreaks havoc on the skin. The carcinogens and nicotine in cigarettes damage the collage cells of the skin causing a higher prevalence of wrinkles and a general pallor to one’s complexion. Smoking is also extremely dehydrating, making the skin dry and dull. Although we cannot reverse the hands of time, quitting allows for better skin hydration and appearance.

Bigger Appetite

Cigarettes have been known to reduce appetite because they are a stimulant and make the metabolism do a slight jump and hunger pains can be forgotten momentarily. Many of those quitting smoking remark that they feel a sudden increase in their appetite and experience weight gain. It might a combination of loss of an oral habit along better tasting ability, but an increased appetite, within reason, is a small price for a deadly habit. Try adding a light exercise routine to your day to help combat rapid weight gain.

Clear Breathing

The effects of quitting smoking on the lungs is almost immediate. In only a few days, one can feel the difference. When using cigarettes, the smoke that you inhale burns the cilia in the lungs and esophagus. They can grow back unless repeatedly exposed to harmful cigarette smoke. Within 1-9 normal breathing without “smoker’s cough” can return

Mood and Energy (blood pressure)

A smoker’s addiction, though deadly, is nothing more than a series of chemical reactions. Chemicals in cigarettes excite the pleasure centers of the brain and make the body become addicted. Oxygen levels in the body decrease because of damage to the lungs making smokers feel sluggish until they smoke again. Carbon monoxide levels increase because the body is not getting enough oxygen and increase blood pressure. This effect makes smokers vulnerable to strokes but it can also cause a low mood and difficult sleep patterns. Nicotine addiction can be overcome in as little as 2 weeks helping with mood and at 2 months, circulation in the body increases causing better energy.

Stop smoking today and begin to feel the whole body benefits. If you have been smoking for an extended period of time, you should consider having a lung screening. While lung cancer is one of the most prevalent diseases in the United States, the sooner it is caught, the better the results treatment can make. Doctors Imaging in Metairie is the only facility in the greater New Orleans area that has been accredited by the American College of Radiology as a certified lung cancer screening center. Because of our equipment, experience, and staff, patients trust in the thoroughness and results of our screenings.

If you would like to book an appointment for a lung cancer screening, you can fill out our Request an Appointment form or you can call our offices in Metairie at 504-883-8111 Monday through Saturday.

The Importance of Low-Dose CTs as Lung Cancer Screenings

Survival rates are 5x higher when lung cancer is detected early.

Lung cancer is one of the most prominent cancers in the United States and throughout much of the world. Because of the prevalence of cigarette smoking and the subsequent secondhand smoke, more people than ever before are being diagnosed with lung tumors and cancer. According to the Center for Disease Control, in 2015 alone, as many as 153,718 people died from lung cancer.

Every year over 218,000 people in the United States are diagnosed with lung cancer and have to begin treatment. What can be done to combat these overwhelming statistics?

To begin, education about the seriousness and detrimental effect that smoking has on the body must continue. Several anti-tobacco coalitions have been successful in their efforts of creating shock and disgust at the consequences of smoking like this commercial or this video. Children need to be shown these horrifying effects early in their education and the other harmful symptoms can results due to smoking: premature aging, fertility problems, tooth decay, mouth cancer, mood imbalances, and many other side effects. If children are given the truth, a truth they can see and touch, they will probably be less inclined to try smoking as teenagers or adults.

But it isn’t just children that need to learn the dangers of lung cancer. Parents, teachers and other role models need to set an example that smoking is a serious and harmful habit that only leads to sickness, disease, and ultimately death. In addition to practicing what they preach in their own life, adults can do their part to protect their children and friends by supporting legislation that seeks to eradicate workplace smoking in places like bars, music venues, and casinos. The employees that work in these areas are only trying to make a living for their family and yet they are exposed to massive amounts of secondhand smoke every day. So many stories already exist of service industry workers contracting lung cancer even though they themselves have never smoked a cigarette in their life. It should be stopped for their protection.

This life-changing diagnosis of lung cancer can be prevented or at the very least hindered. Come to Doctors Imaging to have a low-dose lung cancer screening test performed. By having a low-dose CT scan performed, you can get a clear picture of the condition of your lungs.

You may qualify for a low-dose CT lung cancer screening test if you meet the following conditions:

  • Adults without symptoms aged 55 to 80 years
  • You have a 30 pack-year smoking history
  • You currently smoke or have quit within the past 15 years.

Having this procedure performed will help to give you, your doctors and your family better understanding of your medical condition and what the next steps should be in getting you healthy. The best part about this procedure is that it is only $99 at Doctors Imaging in Metairie as opposed to the $150-$200 price tag at hospitals.

Why is this procedure so important? By having a screening test done early — before symptoms begin — doctors can determine if there are treatments available to save a life. By having this procedure performed, the risk of death due to lung cancer can drop by almost 20%. Prevention and early detection are the best methods for staying healthy and with your family for longer, so consider Doctors Imaging for your low-dose CT lung cancer screening test.

Request your low-dose CT lung cancer screening test today using our appointment form or by calling 504-883-8111.

The Better Health You’ll Get When You Quit Smoking

Smoking is one of the worst vices to have. Thankfully, over the past 50 years, the research and education about the dangers of smoking has become widespread. Nationally, there are still some that pick up the habit. For those smokers out there, quitting cigarettes is like the saying “better late than never.” It’s hard but there are ways to do it. Let’s examine them.

Nicotine Patches and Gum

Nicotine is the highly addictive chemical additive in cigarettes that keeps you coming back for more. In a way, it is just as deadly as the dangerous carcinogens found in cigarettes because they allow for just enough to not immediately harm you (you can actually overdose on nicotine) but enough to keep you addicted. Nicotine gum has proven effective at stopping people in the beginning of their transition out of smoking cigarettes. In the beginning, you are taking in about the same amount of nicotine and then slowly decrease your levels in an effort to wean yourself off the habit of smoking. For many smokers, one of the hardest parts of quitting is losing that oral habit, so chewing gum can be helpful in keeping that bit of routine. However, be careful not to give into the cravings when you are using nicotine replacement products. The overload of nicotine to your system can have harmful side effects.

Electronic Cigarettes

The sale of electronic cigarettes or e-cig has exploded in the last 3-5 years. Former smokers can still have the sensation of smoking cigarette without any of the carcinogens or the harmful second hand smoke. They are allowed to be used in most places so if a craving should hit, you can employ it. The e-cig is actually filled with a solution of “propylene glycol, glycerin, nicotine, and flavorings” and then superheated to a breathable vapor. Like the patch and gum, the nicotine in the e-cig solution is supposed to decrease your smoking until you don’t have the urge anymore. Electronic cigarettes have come under fire because of the potential health risks of the chemicals in the solution, some say that it just acts as a stall before actually quitting, but there are solutions that do not use nicotine, do your research and speak to your doctors about your quitting solutions.

Quitting Prescriptions

Some smokers have found relief from the addiction through nicotine replacement therapy found with certain prescription medicines. The two major brands of anti-smoking medications are Zyban and Chantix. Zyban contains the active ingredient Bupropion and is helps to lessen the urge to smoke while Chantix contains Varenicline which helps with nicotine withdrawal and if a smoker does decide to smoke again the medicine blocks the nicotine from cigarettes. These medicines are still in their infancy and have serious side effects such as “nausea, sleep disturbance, constipation, flatulence, and vomiting as well as headaches, abnormal dreams and taste disturbance” as well as some psychological problems.

Weaning oneself off of any addiction is extremely difficult that is why if you are attempted this journey, find support, reach out to an online community and don’t participate in the same activities where you once smoked. The benefits of quitting smoking, no matter when, can be felt immediately. Former smokers report better moods, better digestion, better taste, better sleep patterns and not to mention the long-term health benefits.

LUNG CANCER SCREENING

Doctors Imaging in Metairie has been officially accredited by the American College of Radiology as a Certified Lung Cancer Screening Center. By using low-dose CT capability, radiologists are able to determine the presence of lung cancer better than ever before. Because of our state of the art 64-slice Siemens CT, our radiologists’ experience and highly trained staff, patients of Doctors Imaging can be assured that their lung cancer screening is thorough. Thanks to this accreditation, Doctors Imaging often sees the damage of smoking on the body and encourages the benefits of quitting smoking as soon as possible. We recommend that if you are over 50 and used to or still smoke cigarettes or tobacco, you should consider a lung screening. The earlier lung cancer is detected and treatment begun, the higher one’s chances are of survival.

If you would like to schedule a lung cancer screening CT or you have more questions about CT capabilities at Doctors Imaging, you can Book an Appointment or you can call our office at 504-883-8111 Monday through Saturday.

Lung Cancer Symptoms and Screenings

According to the Center for Disease Control, lung cancer is one of the most aggressive and commonplace cancers in the world. More people die from lung cancer than any kind of cancer and over 200,000 new cases are reported every year. The cancer is fast moving and without catching it in the early stages, survival chances decrease rapidly. That is why it is of the utmost importance for most smokers over the age of 55 to be screened with a CT scan for lung cancer.

Do not be fooled. Lung cancer is caused by factors like smoking cigarettes and tobacco but it is still possible to develop this kind of cancer even without participating in these practices. The commonly reported lung cancer symptoms are:

  • a cough that doesn’t seem to go away
  • coughing blood or bloody phlegm
  • severe, constant chest pain
  • shortness of breath or breathing issues

These issues can be commonly confused with a severe cold or sickness and that may be part of the reason why people do not get properly screened. So if you notice any of these symptoms, be sure to contact your physician about getting a low-dose CT scan to check for cancerous  nodules or  masses in the lungs.

Another reason why lung cancer screenings are not occurring in enough frequency is because the #1 reason for lung cancer in Americans is smoking cigarettes. Smokers in today’s market are aware of the health risks, they are written right on the package of cigarettes, but most feel shame at their habit and thus do not take proper precautions to be checked for lung cancer. Shame and fear of what the results will hold are the top reasons more people do not have lung cancer screenings.

While tobacco itself is a dangerous plant, it is the additives in cigarettes that contribute to the developing of lung cancer. Dangerous substances from cigarette smoking include all kinds of  chemicals like nicotine, tar, carbon monoxide, ammonia, formaldehyde, cyanide and arsenic. And yet, people continue to smoke them despite information about the ingredients. These chemicals were never manufactured to be ingested but because of nicotine, a highly addictive additive, these chemicals are kept at low amounts so that they don’t kill customers quickly, but rather slowly causes diseases like emphysema and lung cancer, all the while making smokers lifelong customers. A sick cycle indeed.

Doctors Imaging in Metairie has the distinct pride of being the only facility in the Greater New Orleans area that has been certified by the American College of Radiology as a Lung Cancer Screening Center. Because of our equipment, experience and other qualifications, we have been able to offer our services and help detect lung cancer and get our patients the treatment necessary. Our computed tomography capabilities are some of the best because we use the Siemens 64 slice CT, one of the best pieces of equipment on the market.

Doctors Imaging has recently introduced a new Lung Cancer Screening program using a 19-second low dose CT scan for only $99

What started as just one day of awareness nearly 20 years ago has turned into a month full of spreading news and important information about lung cancer to a global audience.  Lung Cancer awareness month is dedicated to educating people of the risks associated with the disease, ways to help prevent it, and to treat it.

Doctors and researchers are dedicated to decreasing the amount of deaths due to lung cancer through earlier detection and extensive screening. Lung Cancer is currently the leading cause of death among cancers, but with CT screening professionals think they can help through non-invasive tests.

The Lung Cancer Alliance is an organization that is devoted to helping advocate for those affected by the disease and spread awareness. Most people don’t know some of the shocking facts and figures ( about Lung Cancer. Here are five that we find the most astounding:

  1. A high percent of people diagnosed with Lung Cancer are current or former smokers

  2. It kills over 150,000 people a year—the second cause of death in the US next to heart disease

  3. Awareness is key because Lung Cancer research gets less government funding than Breast, Prostate, or Colon cancer

  4. Only 15 percent of cases are diagnosed early enough that the disease is still confined to the primary site because of lack of screening

  5. There is only a 15.9 five-year survival rate


The key to early detection and treatment is awareness, and so for Lung Cancer awareness month, we encourage you to share these facts and figures with your friends and families!

For further information about Lung Cancer Screening, call Doctors Imaging at  (504) 883-8111 or click onto

http://www.doctorsimaging.com

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The Debate on Lung Cancer Screenings

Blog Image 1-1If you had the choice to cure cancer in a loved one versus not doing so, what would you choose? This may seem like a silly question, but curing early lung cancer may actually be this simple for many heavy smokers that you know.
In a recent interview with Dr. Claudia Henschke of Mount Sinai Hospital, she lays it out to be this straight forward. Dr. Henschke and her colleagues introduced CT scans as an alternative to chest x-rays in the early 1990s. CT scans can detect cancer much earlier, and since a high percentage of those who die of lung cancer could have been saved with early detection, CT scans have been instrumental in lowering lung cancer fatalities.

So, who gets tested? According to the American Cancer Association, you should get a low dose CT scan of your lungs if you are considered a high-risk patient which includes people who are 55 to 74 years and in fairly good health, have a smoking history equivalent to a pack a day for 30 years, and currently smoke or have quit within the past 15 years. These parameters can include healthy people who don’t suffer from any visible health issues.

Regardless of whether or not people think they are sick, it is recommended to get tested anyways. At Doctors Imaging we provide low dose CT lung screenings for only $99.

There is some concern about the use of CT screenings because the images obtained are so detailed and clear. These scans can indicate the smallest of noncancerous nodules causing some medical professionals to worry about the unnecessary attention the CT scans will cause. These concerns are minimized by having qualified physicians involved with their patients in health care decisions. However, the real question is how many lives can these screenings save? Of the 200,000 people diagnosed every year, early detection can often cure a high percentage.

Here at Doctors Imaging, we think screening is very important.

Low-Dose CT Lung Cancer Screening Recommended By USPSTF

In a groundbreaking move for the American radiology industry, the United States Preventive Services Task Force (USPSTF) has recommended that high-risk patients receive low-dose CT scans to screen for lung cancer. The announcement follows previous evidence which indicated that preventive CT scans are effective in reducing lung cancer deaths. Healthcare professionals across the country are already praising the announcement for sparking an important progression in the fight against cancer. In an interview with The New York Times, Dr. Harold E. Varmus, the director of the National Cancer Institute, said the recommendation would “change the way people think about lung cancer.” Dr. Michael LeFevre, a professor of medicine at the University of Missouri, told the Times that widespread use of CT scans could prevent around 14 percent of lung cancer deaths each year.

 

At Doctors Imaging, we are looking forward to the positive benefits this announcement will have on our patients and their families. As an American College of Radiology accredited facility, we will be working alongside healthcare providers throughout the nation to spread awareness on how low-dose CT scans can prevent lung cancer deaths. While prior studies had been published promoting the benefits of CT screenings, the USPSTF’s endorsement is nonetheless an important step forward for radiologists everywhere. Healthcare professionals nationwide will be working to raise awareness about the importance of CT scans, and their efforts will be assisted by several government organizations, including Congress, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, and the National Cancer Institute.

 

We bring this news to you, our loyal patients, because we are dedicated to providing the community with up to date information on how our low-cost, high-quality services can benefit your overall healthcare experience. We offer low-dose CT scans for only $99, a price unmatched by area hospitals. For more on our services, staff, and appointment information, please visit our website (link) or call 504-883-8111 to speak with a live representative.

 

Sources:

“ACR Statement on USPSTF Draft Recommendation for CT Lung Cancer Screening.” Home -. N.p., n.d. Web. 31 July 2013.

Hellmich, Nanci. “Task Force: Lung Cancer Screenings Should Upgrade Tech.”USA TODAY. N.p., 29 July 2013. Web. 31 July 2013.

Tavirnese, Sabrina. “Task Force Urges Scans for Smokers at High Risk.” New York Times. N.p., 29 July 2013. Web. 31 July 2013.