November is Lung Cancer Awareness Month – Are You at Risk?

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November is Lung Cancer Awareness Month – Here are Some Facts:

  • Lung cancer is the leading cause of cancer death
  • Lung cancer is the second most commonly diagnosed cancer in both men and women
  • More people die each year from lung cancer than breast, colon and prostate cancer combined
  • Smoking is the # 1 Risk for Lung Cancer (80%–90% of lung cancers are attributed to cigarette smoking!)
  • Non-smokers can get lung cancer too!

Risk Factors for Lung Cancer

  • Smoking Cigarettes
  • Second Hand-Smoke
  • Radon (2nd leading cause of lung cancer.)
  • Other Chemicals (asbestos, arsenic, diesel, exhaust, nickel, tar, soot, some forms of silica and chromium.)
  • Personal or Family History of Lung Cancer
  • HIV infection
  • Radiation Therapy to the Chest
  • Beta-carotene supplements.
  • Arsenic in drinking water (primarily from private wells) can increase the risk of lung cancer. For more information, visit the EPA’s Arsenic in…

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2 thoughts on “November is Lung Cancer Awareness Month – Are You at Risk?

  1. I am a 7 1/2 year lung cancer survivor – a non-smoker. I have a blog where I recently posted my article about “November is Lung Cancer Month.” I am trying to raise awareness about the rising numbers of people (mostly young women) who never smoked and who are getting diagnosed with advanced lung cancer.
    Your statistics perpetuate the confusion about the causes of lung cancer. I have consistently read that only 30% of smokers get lung cancer; that is a high statistic. However, I’ve read that between 15%-40% of people who never smoked get lung cancer. What is that cause?? Lung cancer is the NUMBER ONE cancer killer – more than breast, prostate, colon cancers COMBINED, yet it gets the least amount of funding…Why? because we believe we know the cause: smoking, asbestos….your list (lung cancer is not genetically inherited either). This belief fosters complacency: I won’t get lung cancer if I am not exposed to anything on your list. People need to take more responsibility to prevent this deadly disease. I hope you will help me get this message out.

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    1. Hi Laurie. First of all, thank you for your comments. I am very happy to hear you are a SURVIVOR and THRIVING!

      I applaud your wanting to raise awareness to the fact that non-smokers also get lung cancer (as I mentioned in my post) and that you bring to light the ‘disproportion’ of cancer research funding. It would seem that with “Lung cancer being the #1 cause of cancer deaths, more that breast, colon and prostate cancer combined” (also mentioned in my post) deserves a higher proportion of money for research aimed at prevention, diagnosis and treatment. On a positive note, ‘targeted therapies’ and clinical trials that are increasing the prognosis have come from the research.I also noted in my post (and as you mention here,) “Non-smokers get lung cancer too.” You will see an upcoming post with more about this fact.

      As mentioned in my post, there are a variety of risk factors, including ‘gene mutation’ which results from the toxins found in cigarettes as well as other chemicals people may (knowingly or unknowingly) be exposed to. http://www.cancer.org/research/acsresearchupdates/lungcancer/discovery-of-new-lung-cancer-mutations-may-mean-more-treatment-options.

      The fact remains – cigarette smoking is the #1 cause of lung cancer deaths and #1 ‘preventable’ cause of lung cancer world wide (according to the resources listed in my post – American Cancer Society, Centers for Disease Control, American Lung Association, and the National Institutes of Health/National Cancer Institute.) The facts I found in my search of the literature stated that “tobacco use accounts for at least 30% of ALL cancer deaths, and causes 87% of lung cancer deaths in men, and 70% of lung cancer deaths in women. (Source: Cancer Facts & Figures 2014) Additional resources – http://www.cancer.org/cancer/cancercauses/tobaccocancer/tobacco-related-cancer-fact-sheethttp://www.cancer.org/research/cancerfactsstatistics/index.

      Laurie, you know first-hand what it is like to go through diagnosis and treatment of lung cancer, and your bringing attention to this awful disease can help many. My hope is that through education and awareness, more people at risk will be able to prevention cancer. Prevention, Early Detection and Treatment SAVE LIVES! I hope you follow the upcoming posts and add what you feel would be helpful for readers to know from the perspective of a ‘cancer survivor.’ Your story Laurie will INSPIRE and offer HOPE to many. I wish you much health and happiness for many years to come.

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