Breathe In, Breathe Out
We spoke with Lindsey Wilson, registered nurse at Hillcrest Hospital Cushing, who is the nurse navigator for the Lung Cancer Screening Program. Lindsey shared what her role entails, some advice to keep your lungs healthy and why it’s important to have a month dedicated to lung health.
“We screen patients who are high risk for lung cancer using low dose CT imaging of the chest. My duties include screening the patients to see if they meet the criteria, scheduling them for their screening and any follow-ups that are required. I am the person who guides the patients through the program, whether they have negative or positive results,” Lindsey shares.
Lindsey has been with the Hillcrest HealthCare System for seven years and has been screening patients in Cushing for almost four years. She says her favorite thing about working at Hillcrest Cushing is that “Everyone shares the same vision and support of patient care. The patient is the number one priority and the care provided by the staff is exceptional!”
“Getting the opportunity to truly save people’s lives is my favorite part of what I do here. Catching lung cancer early is the key to successful treatment and I get to provide this service to the community of Cushing,” Lindsey adds, noting how important lung screenings are.
Lindsey shares advice about how people can keep their lungs healthy. “First would be avoiding cigarettes and second-hand smoke,” Lindsay says. “It is the number one cause of lung cancer death as well as other chronic lung diseases like COPD. Exercise is another important factor in healthy lungs as it improves lung capacity. Lastly, be consistent with regular check-ups with your healthcare provider.” Lindsey also shares that while many people think only smokers get lung cancer, anyone can. Smokers and ex-smokers do have a higher risk of getting lung cancer than non-smokers, though.
“Our lungs are important for good health. They are susceptible to several different diseases that are often avoidable. It is important to know your risk factors like chemicals that you are breathing in daily and your genetic make-up. Healthy Lung Month helps to bring awareness to the importance of healthy lungs. This month allows for education on prevention of these diseases and maintaining good habits to keep your lungs healthy,” Lindsey concludes, detailing why Healthy Lung Month is an important month to highlight.
For more information about the lung screening and the Lung Center at Hillcrest, please visit www.LungExam.com or call 918-579-LUNG (5864).