Cancer Screening at UI Health/Mile Square

Over the past few decades, there has been an abundance of new research on treating cancer. Scientists around the world are always learning more, but there is still a long way to go to fully understand how to cure this disease. 

However, there is one thing we do know: In many cases, the likelihood of successfully treating cancer improves greatly if it’s caught early.

At the University of Illinois Cancer Center, we are dedicated to helping our patients and community members catch cancer before it can enter the later stages where it grows and spreads. That’s why we offer many types of cancer screening services at UI Health/Mile Square.

Types of Screening

We screen for several types of cancer, including:

  • Breast
  • Lung
  • Cervical
  • Prostate
  • Colorectal
Type of CancerTest Offered at UI Health
Breast CancerX-ray images of your breasts that look for changes or lumps that are too small for you or your provider to feel
Cervical Cancer

  • Pap test (also known as Pap smear) during your pelvic exam which looks for cancer or precancerous cell changes that could turn into cancer

  • HPV test performed with Pap smear to look for the virus that causes precancerous cell changes

Colorectal CancerColonoscopy — a tube inserted into the rectum that looks for cancer or polyps (growths that can turn into colorectal cancer)
Lung CancerLow-dose computed tomography (CT) scan — a quick, painless scan that uses a very small amount of radiation to get detailed X-rays of your lungs
Prostate CancerBlood test that measures prostate specific antigen (PSA) — a substance that may be higher in men with prostate cancer

In addition to screening, we also provide services such as tobacco cessation and weight management that can help you avoid some of the risk factors for cancer — and possibly prevent it from forming in the first place.

Breast Cancer Screening (Mammograms)

Mammograms are X-ray pictures of your breasts. A mammogram can find changes in your breast that are too small for you or your provider to feel. It is currently the best way to find breast cancer in most women.

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Cervical Cancer Screening

Pap tests (also known as Pap smears) involve your provider taking samples of cells from outside of the cervix and vagina to find cancerous or precancerous cells. If precancerous cells are found, you can usually get treatment that will prevent cancer from forming. Some women may also get a test for HPV — the virus that causes cell changes that can lead to cancer — at the same time as their Pap test.

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Colorectal Cancer Screening (Colonoscopies)

Colorectal cancer is one of the most common cancers in the US. If found in its early stages, it can usually be cured. And one of the best ways to find it early — or to stop it from forming at all — is through regular screening, such as colonoscopies.

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Lung Cancer Screening

Lung cancer is the leading cause of death from cancer — but if it is found early, it’s more likely to be successfully treated. Lung cancer screening uses low-dose computed tomography (CT). It allows us to find very small signs of cancer in its early stages and often before cancer causes symptoms. With low dose CT screening, patients are 20% less likely to die from lung cancer than those who do not get screened.

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Prostate Cancer Screening (PSA Tests)

After skin cancer, prostate cancer is the most common type of cancer in men in the US. Screening usually begins with a prostate specific antigen (PSA) test. If PSA levels are high, it may be a sign of prostate cancer — and the earlier high levels of PSA are detected, the better the chance for survival. 

The 5-year survival rate (percent of men who are alive 5 years after the cancer is found) is nearly 100%. Between 1993 and 2017, the death rate dropped by more than half, partly thanks to screening.

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