Navigating Lung Cancer Navigating Lung Cancer - Page 19

Tests used to look for and learn more about an abnormality on a screening include: Chest X-rays. A chest X-ray is painless. Doctors look at your lungs and airways. Chest X-rays can show spots (nodules) or other abnormal areas. There’s no way to tell from an X-ray whether any are cancerous. If your chest X-ray looks suspicious, more tests will be required.. CT scans. A CT scan (sometimes called a “CAT scan”) uses X-rays to create cross- sectional pictures. They provide more detailed pictures of the size and location of abnormalities found on a chest X-ray. Positive-emission tomography (PET scan). In this test, a radioactive sugar is injected. It provides data about whether something seen on a CT scan is metabolically active (changing or growing). PET scans can tell if a tumor is spreading from the primary site to other parts of the body. Bronchoscopy. A bronchoscope is a thin, flexible tube that contains a tiny video camera. The tube is passed through your nose or mouth. It goes down through your windpipe (trachea) into your lungs. This allows the doctor, usually a pulmonologist or thoracic surgeon, to see inside your air passages. They can take small tissue samples (biopsies) and fluid samples. Samples are sent to a lab and checked for cancer. Navigational Bronchoscopy. A kind of bronchoscopy that uses a GPS like system to locate and biopsy lung nodules that are beyond the reach of conventional bronchoscopy with safety and accuracy. Endobronchial Ultrasound. This test is sometimes used during bronchoscopy. It not only diagnoses lung cancer, but can also see if it has spread to the lymph nodes (staging). The bronchoscope has a sound-wave probe on the end. Doctors can locate and see masses and lymph nodes next to the airway, but not within the lung. Doctors then use needles to sample the mass and/or lymph nodes to check for cancer. Endobronchial ultrasound is not offered at all hospitals and medical centers. 17