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Lung Screening

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Lunc Cancer Screenings in Staten Island, NY

Effective tools are available for lung cancer screening at Richmond University Medical Center. Lung cancer is one of the most common causes of cancer deaths in the United States. Both early detection and improvements in lung cancer treatment are helping us save lives. When these cancers are identified in their earliest stages, 90 percent are curable. We are dedicated to providing screening and treatment for lung cancer for those at risk in our community.

What Is Lung Cancer Screening?

Images derived from low-dose CT scans are the gold standard for lung cancer screening. Using X-rays to scan the patient’s entire chest, our physicians and medical technicians can complete the entire scan in about 15 minutes. Patients can take and hold a breath for five to ten seconds as each subsequent image is captured. All of these images together help our lung cancer screening team record the state of the patient’s lungs. If any abnormalities are discovered, a variety of up-to-date treatment options are available with the experienced physicians in the Oncology Department at Richmond University Medical Center.

Why Get Lung Cancer Screenings?

An annual lung cancer screening procedure helps your doctors find cancer before it spreads and grows throughout the lungs or other parts of the body. At Richmond University Medical Center, we adhere to lung cancer screening guidelines that recommend all people between the ages of 55 and 80 who smoke, or quit within the last 15 years, should undergo an annual lung cancer screening. Patients are considered high risk who have a 20-pack-year, or more, smoking history. That includes everyone who has smoked an average of one pack of cigarettes per day for 20 years or two packs a day for 10 years. These are the members of our Staten Island community who we encourage to take advantage of annual low-dose CT scan lung cancer screening.

Meet Your Lung Cancer Screening Team

The lung cancer screening program is the focus of a group of dedicated medical professionals. Physicians, nurses, and technicians help each patient receive excellent care. Patients are guided by a nurse navigator, and the program is overseen by two experienced physicians.

Nancy Sayegh-Rooney, RN, ONN-CG, NCTTP

Our nurse navigator advocates for all lung cancer screening patients. She helps coordinate the screening process, helping to make sure that all goes smoothly. The navigator provides patients with information, sets up the appointments, and accompanies each patient to the scan. Follow-up phone calls are made with the results to each patient. And if needed, the nurse navigator will help figure out the next steps. If your primary care physician must refer you to the lung cancer screening, the nurse navigator provides assistance and also helps with any issues that arise related to insurance billing. An annual low-dose CT scan is usually covered by medical insurance for smokers and former smokers. The services of the nurse navigator are provided at no cost to the patient.

Keith Diaz, MD

Director of the Lung Screening Program, Keith Diaz, MD, is board certified in Internal Medicine, Pulmonary Diseases, and Critical Care Medicine. He also contributes experience and training to our cardiopulmonary rehabilitation department. Overseeing all aspects of the lung cancer screening program, Dr. Diaz is proud of the program. “Our team always puts your health first. We work together to make sure you have the resources and answers you need when you need them, starting with our nurse navigator, who will be with you every step of the way. Richmond University Medical Center is at the forefront of lung screenings and education – because we care about the people in our community.”

Loren J. Harris, MD, FACS, FCCP

Chair of Surgery and Director of the Division of Thoracic Surgery, Loren J. Harris, MD, FACS, FCCP is board certified in Thoracic Surgery and General Surgery. Dr. Harris serves as Chair of the Department of Surgery and Director of the Division of Thoracic Surgery at Richmond University Medical Center.

What Happens After the Lung Cancer Screening?

If the low-dose CT scan does not reveal any problems, patients are invited to repeat the lung cancer screening process the following year. The procedure becomes part of the patient’s annual health screening tests.

If any abnormalities are found, patients are offered further support and services. These include:

  • Electromagnetic navigational bronchoscopy (ENB): This state-of-the-art, minimally invasive procedure utilizes GPS to locate and biopsy lesions without an incision.
  • Endobronchial ultrasound (EBUS): This minimally invasive procedure provides a detailed image of the patient’s airways.
  • Videoscopes: This method helps surgeons make smaller incisions when performing lung cancer surgeries.

We offer advanced treatments for lung cancer that are both nonsurgical and surgical. These may include radiation therapy, chemotherapy, and immunotherapy. If surgery is required, patients can receive follow-up pulmonary rehabilitation services to improve their lung health. Specialists at Richmond University Medical Center offer exercise programs for strengthening, thorough medical evaluations, heart monitoring, and nutrition education. We also encourage our patients to quit smoking.

Smoking Cessation Program Helps You Quit

Our tobacco specialist assists patients who smoke with a Nicotine Education and Treatment Program at Richmond University Medical Center. We understand how difficult it is to quit nicotine and the habit of smoking cigarettes. Our comprehensive approach provides the following:

  • Professional counseling that is convenient and effective
  • Six-week group session offered free of charge
  • Consultation on new medications and other strategies to help quit smoking

We also offer screening services for chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD). Working in conjunction with the Richmond University Medical Center’s Cardiopulmonary Rehabilitation Center, we help patients improve lung health and reduce the risks for lung cancer. If you have tried to quit smoking before, please know that it is never too late to try again. Contact the Lung Cancer Screening Program Nurse Navigator at 718-818-2391 or email

Schedule a Lung Cancer Screening Test on Staten Island, NY

Did you smoke cigarettes in the past, or do you currently smoke? Are you between the ages of 55 and 80, or have other high-risk factors for lung cancer? Consult with experienced physicians and medical practitioners at Richmond University Medical Center. Contact us today for a lung cancer screening test.

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