World Lung Cancer Day

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      • 1st August is observed as World Lung Cancer Day every year to raise awareness.

      • Lung cancer is the 2nd most common cancer worldwide. India is no exception to this deadly disease.

      • The most common and strongest risk factor is tobacco smoking.

      • Although non-smokers can also develop lung cancer, smokers are more than 10 times at higher risk for developing the disease.

      • Tobacco smokers are also at risk for developing the more aggressive forms of lung cancers.

      • Any form of smoking – filtered cigarettes, bidis, cigars, pipes, hookah/sisha etc. are not safe.

      • Risk factors for non-smokers include exposure to second hand smoke, bio-mass fuel usage (firewood, cow dung, coal etc.) for cooking, exposure to radiation, and air pollution (indoor and outdoor).

      • Persons working in certain occupations like asbestos industries, shipyards, coal mine workers and stone quarry workers are also at risk for developing lung cancer.

      • Major symptoms of lung cancer include prolonged cough with or without phlegm production, weakness, loss of appetite, and significant weight loss.

      • Other symptoms like blood on coughing, breathing difficulty, and chest pain can also point towards lung cancer.

      • Persons who have been smoking more than 10 cigarettes or bidis per day from a young age, need to get themselves screened regularly starting at 40 years of age, to detect early cancer.

      • With advancements in diagnostic methods, lung cancers can now be detected in early stages.

      • Upon suspicion, your Pulmonologist might ask for a CT scan of the chest, and a bronchoscopy or thoracoscopy for confirmation of diagnosis.

      • Early detection of lung cancer can help in more efficient management of disease, and also in some cases, to cure.

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