Dr. Anuradha Shah
The incidence of Lung cancer all over the world continues to rise despite the advances in diagnostics and treatment. It also causes the maximum number of cancer related deaths.
In India, the number of new cases increased from around 65,000 in 2009 to 90,000 in 2013, registering a 15-20% increase annually.
The overall 5-year survival rate of lung cancer is poor (only 5%). The age of presentation in Indians is also younger (mid 50’s) while in the rest of world it presents in people in their mid 60’s.
The death rate of the disease is so high that prevention is the only way to avoid it.
Early detection helps in better long term survival.
What are the risk factors?
- Smoking, even passive or second hand smoking is an important risk factor.
- Lung cancer can also be caused due to environmental and genetic factors.
Who should get tested?
- A long standing cough that is not relieved despite treatment for more than four weeks should be reason enough for a person to undergo further testing..
- All smokers who smoke more than 1 packet a day for 20 years.
What can you do?
STOP SMOKING & CHEWING TOBACCO.
If you are a current smoker between 50-79 years and who has smoked 20 cigarettes/day for 20 years or who is still smoking or stopped less than 15 years back then a “Low dose computed tomography (CT)” is a useful screening tool to diagnose early lung cancer.