August 1 marks World Lung Cancer Awareness Day

1 Aug 2017 by under News
Lung abscess   CT scan 7471756882CREDITYALEROSEN 100x100 August 1 marks World Lung Cancer Awareness Day

Credit: Yale Rosen

Lung cancer is most often associated with smoking, and rightfully so. An average of 130,659 Americans (74,300 men and 56,359 women) died of smoking-attributable lung cancer each year between 2005 and 2010, according to the American Lung Association. On this World Lung Cancer Awareness Day, it is important to note that smoking is not the only cause of lung cancer.

Environmental factors, including asbestos exposure, contribute to lung cancer being the leading cancer killer for both men and women in the U.S. In fact, those exposed to are at a far greater risk of lung cancer than mesothelioma, as MyMeso previously reported. The main difference between the two diseases is that lung cancers are treatable with early detection, and mesothelioma is rarely caught in its early stages, with most patients dying within 18 months of diagnosis.

At the Disease Awareness Organization (ADAO) 13th Annual International Awareness and Prevention Conference, Dr. Steven Markowitz, MD, PhD, director of the Barry Commoner Center for Health and the Environment at Queens College, City University of New York,  stressed that no cure for lung cancer exists unless it is detected early. Research has shown low-dose CT “may at least be as useful in asbestos workers as in heavy smokers for the early diagnosis of lung cancer” and can also be used to detect advanced pleural malignant mesothelioma.

Early signs of lung cancer can include a persistent, worsening cough; shortness of breath; chest pain; unintentional weight loss; hoarseness and pain in bones.

 

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