Lung cancer is one of the most common cancers in the world. It is responsible for the most cancer deaths in both men and women throughout the world, as well as the United States and New Hampshire. Cigarette smoking causes most lung cancers. The more cigarettes you smoke per day and the earlier you started smoking, the greater your risk of lung cancer. High levels of pollution, radiation and asbestos exposure may also increase risk.
Lung cancer was not common prior to the 1930s but increased rapidly over the following decades as smoking tobacco increased. In many developing countries, the incidence of lung cancer is beginning to fall following public education about the dangers of cigarette smoking and effective smoking-cessation programs; however, it remains among the most common types of cancers in both men and women worldwide.
Lung cancer has also surpassed breast cancer in causing the most cancer-related deaths in women in the United States.
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Lung cancers are cancers that begin in the lungs. The twp main types of lung cancer are small cell lung cancer and non-small cell lung cancer.
Non-small cell lung cancer is more common than small cell lung cancer and usually grows and spreads slowly.
Small cell lung cancer is less common, grows more quickly, and is more likely to spread to other organs in the body than non-small cell lung cancer.
Some of the things that put you at risk for lung cancer include:
Different people have different symptoms for lung cancer. Some people don't have any symptoms at all. Lung cancer symptoms may include:
To find out if lung cancer is present, a doctor will look at your medical history, smoking history, exposure to substances at home, and family history of cancer.
The doctor will also do a physical exam and may order a chest x-ray or other tests.
The treatment depends on the type of lung cancer and how far it has spread. Treatments include: