The Impact of Lung Cancer for Women-Signs and Symptoms
In the About.com article Lung Cancer Signs and Symptoms, it states that “Women now account for half of all new cases of lung cancer. Between 1974 and 1994, lung cancer deaths increased 150% in women, while men experienced only a 20% increase.”
This significant increase begs the question: Why are so many women dying of lung cancer?
Research suggests that though women may smoke and inhale less cigarettes, women are 1.5 times more likely to get lung cancer than men. Although further research is needed, scientists believe the difference may be genetically linked.
As recent statistics indicate, many women that develop lung cancer don’t smoke or have never smoked. A famous case in point is the often repeated example of Dana Reeves who died of lung cancer and never smoked.
I recently met a woman at a lung cancer event who was a 1 year lung cancer survivor. Like most symptomatically detected survivors, it was a later stage diagnosis. As she addressed the gathered audience she proclaimed that she didn’t smoke, had never smoked, was never extensively exposed to 2nd hand smoke. She had no family members who had lung cancer, nor had she been exposed to other known carcinogens such as radon and asbestos.
But still with no recognized risk factors, she developed late stage non-small cell lung cancer.
In this case, there appears to be some other factors at work than the more recognized risk factors for lung cancer.
Is lung cancer in women genetically linked, as noted in the article? Is it linked to hormones? Can early detection methods be effective in these situations?