Southern Tennessee Regional Health System - Winchester at the forefront of early Lung Cancer Detection

February 3, 2020

Southern Tennessee Regional Health System - Winchester (STRHS- Winchester) is proud to announce its Lung Nodule Clinic and a new addition to its advanced diagnostic procedures.

The new advanced diagnostic technology is a navigational bronchoscopy and biopsy system that uses electromagnetic field instead of traditional radiation (CT, X-RAY).  A bronchoscopy is a minimally invasive procedure where a flexible, small fiber optic tube is used to see and biopsy the inside of the lung.  Navigational bronchoscopy provides a virtual, three-dimensional map of the lung, enabling the doctors to perform a precise biopsy and mark the area to be easily visible during surgical removal of the lesion (nodule).  With traditional bronchoscopy, only 65% of the lesions could be biopsied.  Utilizing the navigational approach, almost 90% of them can be reached.

In 2017, STRHS started an early detection program with low-dose computed tomography (CT) screening program to help detect lung cancer in patients who meet specific criteria.  Patients who are at least 55 years of age, have a 30 pack per year history of smoking, current smokers or those who quit within the past 15 years all qualify for this early detection screening process.  The program allows doctors to detect small lesions that previously wouldn’t be visible on traditional chest x-rays.  Now with the addition of navigational bronchoscopy and biopsy technology these lesions can be not only detected but diagnosed early and treated at STRHS-Winchester.

“Lung cancer makes up about 14 percent of all new cancer diagnoses each year, but many patients with the disease don’t have any symptoms at all,” said Cliff Wilson, CEO at STRHS-Winchester/Sewanee. “We believe a team approach is the strongest foundation for lung cancer prevention and care. The members of our Lung Nodule Clinic work together to ensure that patients receive quick access to high quality care, close to home.  With this team and our advanced diagnostic procedures we have the potential to help save lives by detecting lung cancer earlier, which means patients have the opportunity to begin treatment sooner.   It is just one more way we are advancing our mission of Making Communities Healthier and keeping patients at the center of all we do as we navigate them down the path of care.”

The Lung Nodule Clinic provides innovative pulmonary programs that utilize a multi-disciplinary team approach with emphasis on patient-centered care.  The clinic aims toward the early detection and treatment of lung nodules and thoracic malignancies by reducing delays in the evaluation and treatment of patients.  The Lung Nodule Clinic initiates standardized follow-up and treatment pathways specific to the current disease process of each patient using an integrative approach and helping to navigate patients through the continuum of care.

If you have any questions, please call The Lung Nodule Clinic at 931-962-9861 or contact your primary care provider.

About Southern Tennessee Regional Health System

Part of LifePoint Health, Southern Tennessee Regional Health System (STRHS) is a regional network of hospitals and health care services serving the healthcare needs of communities in the southern Tennessee region with facilities in Winchester, Sewanee, Pulaski, and Lawrenceburg.  The system has 382 licensed beds, more than 300 affiliated physicians, 1,250 employees, and serves more than 160,000 people in rural communities in the region.  The Winchester campus provides inpatient and outpatient services to Franklin County and the surrounding area at its 131-bed acute care facility and physician practices. For more information, visit