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Lung Cancer; Facts to Know.

Cigarette smoking is responsible for up to 80 percent of lung cancers among women. Those who smoke two or more packs of cigarettes a day have lung cancer mortality rates 12 to 30 times higher than that of nonsmokers.

In 2006, there will be an estimated 174,470 new cases of lung cancer accounting for about 13 percent of all cancers: 92,700 will be diagnosed in men and 81,770 in women, according to the American Cancer Society.

About 162,460 people will die from lung cancer in 2006, including 73,140 women.

Since 1950, lung cancer mortality rates for U.S. women have increased an estimated 600 percent. In 1987, lung cancer surpassed breast cancer to become the leading cause of cancer death among U.S. women. It's a sad commentary on the Virginia Slims commercial "You've come a long way, baby."

There are two major types of lung cancer--small cell and non-small cell. Small cell lung cancer is the more aggressive but less common form.

Persistent cough, sputum streaked with blood, chest pain and recurring pneumonia or bronchitis may sometimes be signs of lung cancer.

Other risk factors for developing lung cancer include exposure to certain industrial substances, such as arsenic, some organic chemicals, radon and asbestos (particularly for people who smoke); radiation exposure from occupational, medical and environmental sources; air pollution; scarring in the lung from prior tuberculosis infection; and second-hand tobacco smoke.

If a woman stops smoking before cancer develops, damaged lung tissue gradually starts to return to normal.

Chemotherapy alone or combined with radiation is the treatment of choice for most cases of small-cell lung cancer. A large percentage of patients who have this type of treatment experience remission, which may be long-lasting in some cases.

The five-year relative survival rate for all stages of lung cancer combined is 15 percent. The survival rate is 49 percent for cases detected when the disease is still localized, but only 16 percent of lung cancers are discovered that early.


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Keywords: lung cancer, cancer, cigarette, women, smoke, survival rate
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Title Annotation:disease / disorder overview
Publication:NWHRC Health Center - Lung Cancer
Article Type:Disease/Disorder overview
Geographic Code:1USA
Date:Sep 8, 2006
Previous Article:Lung Cancer; Prevention.
Next Article:Lung Cancer; Questions to Ask.

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