New lifesaving lung cancer screening available

Shara Dae Howard
November 01, 2018 - 3:49 pm
Lung Cancer
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PHILADELPHIA (KYW Newsradio) -- November is Lung Cancer Awareness Month, and the American Lung Association is highlighting awareness around lung cancer and screenings that is saving lives.

Lung cancer is the nation's leading cause of cancer deaths for both women and men, with an estimated 10,000 newly diagnosed cases in Pennsylvania in 2018 alone. Deborah Brown, with the American Lung Association says saving lives can be as simple as early detection.

"There is newly available lung cancer screening which helps diagnose the disease in its earliest stages when it's most curable," Brown said. "So we're encouraging people to take a very simple test to see if they are at high risk."

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Officials say overall, lung cancer rates among women have been increasing over the past 41 years, while falling among men. In the last 41 years, the rate of new lung cancer cases has fallen 35% among men, while increasing 87% among women.

Brown says the screenings are recommended for high-risk groups such as smokers ages 55-80, but anyone can develop lung cancer. 

"Limit second-hand smoke exposure, radon exposure is the second leading cause of lung cancer," she explained. "It's a colorless, odorless, radioactive gas."

Brown says the American Lung Association is fighting for cleaner air legislation because particle pollution also increases the risk of lung cancer.

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CORRECTION: In an earlier version of this story, Deborah Brown's name was misspelled.