Lung cancer screening program at UnityPoint Health® - Trinity helps find cancers in early stages

MOLINE, IL – Hundreds of people who may be at high risk for lung cancer are being proactively screened through UnityPoint Health® - Trinity’s lung cancer screening program. Since 2013, the program at Trinity Cancer Center in Moline has helped discover cancers in early stages in people who had no symptoms.

Early detection is critical to the effective treatment of lung cancer. Only lung cancers caught before spread to other organs are treatable.

Participants referred to the program must be between the ages of 55-77. They must be healthy, asymptomatic, and have a history of smoking. The screening involves a low-dose CT scan which is the most efficient and effective way to detect early stage lung cancers. Screening costs are often covered by insurance or Medicare.

“This type of low-dose CT scan has changed the game for detection of lung cancer. It is greatly impacting early detection and stage of the disease at diagnosis, which is resulting in better outcomes for patients,” said Dr. Nathan Durick.

In early December, findings from Trinity’s lung cancer screening program will be presented at the World Conference on Lung Cancer in Vienna, Italy. Dr. Michael Porubcin’s daughter, Emilia Porubcin will present the findings. Emilia worked with Trinity Nurse Navigator Judy Howell and Advanced Radiology physicians Dr. Steven Cremer and Dr. Nathan Durick. Together, they analyzed data on 466 screening participants. The findings show 13 biopsy proven malignancies were identified in patients, 12 of whom are alive and doing well.

“The screening program is making a difference. For smokers battling nicotine addiction, we are here to offer suggestions and resources that can help them to quit,” said Trinity Nurse Navigator Judy Howell.

Anyone interested in being screened should contact their physician or Judy Howell at 309-779-5059.