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Home > > Health & WellnessLung Cancer Awareness Month

Lung Cancer Awareness Month

November is Lung Cancer Awareness Month.

People who smoke are at highest risk for developing lung cancer, but nonsmokers are also at risk. Lung cancer is the number one cancer killer of women, surpassing breast cancer and other female cancers. Learn the signs and symptoms.

Recognizing Symptoms

Common signs and symptoms of lung cancer include:

  • A cough that doesn't go away and gets worse over time
  • Constant chest pain
  • Coughing up blood
  • Shortness of breath, wheezing or hoarseness
  • Repeated problems with pneumonia or bronchitis
  • Swelling of the neck and face
  • Loss of appetite or weight loss
  • Fatigue

These symptoms may be caused by lung cancer or by other conditions. It is important to check with a doctor.

Understanding Lung Cancer

Cancers that begin in the lungs are divided into two major types, non-small cell lung cancer and small cell lung cancer, depending on how the cells look under a microscope. Each type of lung cancer grows and spreads in different ways and is treated differently.

Nonsmall cell lung cancer is more common than small cell lung cancer, and it generally grows and spreads more slowly. There are three main types of non-small cell lung cancer. They are named for the type of cells in which the cancer develops: squamous cell carcinoma (also called epidermoid carcinoma), adenocarcinoma, and large cell carcinoma.

Trying to quit smoking? Need help? View HAP's information on Quitting Smoking or enroll in HAP's Smoking Intervention Program (SIP) for members.

Please view the diagram from the National Cancer Institute to learn more about lung anatomy. Other sites with valuable information include the American Cancer Society or American Lung Association.

Test your risk:

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