Lung cancer is one of the most common type of cancer

Around 47,000 people are diagnosed with the condition in the UK every year.
lung cancer

It can be tricky to diagnose early as there are often no signs or symptoms in the early stages of lung cancer. However, people may go onto develop symptoms including:

  • A persistent cough
  • Coughing up blood
  • Persistent breathlessness
  • Unexplained tiredness and weight loss
  • An ache or pain when you breath or cough

Who can be affected by lung cancer?

Lung cancer mainly affects older people. It’s rare in people younger than 40. More than 40% of people diagnosed with lung cancer in the UK are aged 75 and older.  

What can cause lung cancer?

Smoking cigarettes is the single biggest risk factor for lung cancer. It’s responsible for more than 70% of cases.

Whilst smoking cigarettes is the biggest risk factor, using other types of tobacco products can also increase your risk, including:

  • Cigars
  • Pipe tobacco
  • Snuff (a powdered form of tobacco)
  • Chewing tobacco

Passive smoking

If you do not smoke, frequent exposure to other people’s tobacco smoke (which is known as passive smoking) can increase your risk of developing lung cancer.

Occupational exposure and pollution

Exposure to certain chemicals and substances which are used in several occupations and industries may increase your risk of developing lung cancer. These chemicals and substances include:

  • Arsenic
  • Asbestos
  • Beryllium
  • Cadmium
  • Coal and coke fumes
  • Silica
  • Nickel

Organisations that can help

As well as the NHS being a great place to support you, you can also find more information, advice and support by visiting the following sites:

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