Lung Cancer

Smoking in your past? See us about your future.

If you’ve been a smoker, or believe you may be at risk for lung cancer due to other reasons (see Risk Factors below), consider a lung cancer screening from St. Francis Health.

We’ll make the process easy and convenient, and more accurate than ever before thanks to our new low-dose CT scan capabilities. A low-dose CT scan is quick, painless and, best of all, more effective than a traditional X-ray at detecting lung cancer at an early stage. And the earlier it’s detected, the easier it is to treat.


  • Constant chest pain

  • Coughing up blood

  • Fatigue

  • Loss of appetite or weight loss

  • Persistent cough that worsens

  • Repeated problems with pneumonia or bronchitis

  • Shortness of breath (wheezing or hoarseness)

  • Swelling of neck and face

If any of the symptoms above last as long as two weeks, see your doctor.

Risk Factors

  • Cigarettes — Smoking causes lung cancer.

  • Cigars and Pipes — cigar and pipe smokers have a higher risk of lung cancer.

  • Environmental Tobacco Smoke — The chance of developing lung cancer is increased by exposure to environmental tobacco smoke (the smoke in the air when someone else smokes). Radon and asbestos exposure can also cause lung damage and lung cancer.

  • Lung Diseases — Tuberculosis and other lung diseases can increase a person's chance of developing lung cancer.

  • Personal History — A person who has had lung cancer once is more likely to develop lung cancer a second time.

  • Pollution — Researchers have found a link between lung cancer and exposure to certain pollutants.


The doctor will conduct a thorough physical exam and may use one or more of the following procedures to obtain tissue to determine whether a person has lung cancer:

  • Bronchoscopy — The doctor puts a thin, lighted tube into the mouth or nose and down through the windpipe to look into the breathing passages and collect cells or small tissue samples.

  • Needle Aspiration — A thin needle is inserted through the chest into the tumor to remove a sample of tissue.

  • Thoracentesis — The doctor uses a needle to remove a sample of the fluid that surrounds the lungs to check for cancer cells.

  • Thoracotomy — Surgery to open the chest is sometimes needed to diagnose lung cancer.

Source: National Cancer Institute