Lung Cancer Awareness Month 2022: Myths related to lung cancer

Updated on Nov 18, 2022 12:49 PM IST

Will only those who smoke suffer from lung cancer? Only senior citizens tend to suffer from lung cancer? Does lung cancer mean death? This Lung Cancer Awareness Month, doctor debunks these and other myths, reveals facts

Lung Cancer Awareness Month 2022: Myths related to lung cancer (Twitter/CDC_Cancer)
Lung Cancer Awareness Month 2022: Myths related to lung cancer (Twitter/CDC_Cancer)
ByZarafshan Shiraz, Delhi

Even though the cases of lung cancer are rising at a rapid rate in India, there are a lot of misconceptions associated with it and the awareness regarding this cancer is significantly low due to the myths surrounding it. To do our bid in solving it this Lung Cancer Awareness Month, we got a doctor on board to help you separate facts from fiction as lung cancer is one of the most common cancers seen in people of all age groups.

In an interview with HT Lifestyle, Dr Suhas Aagre, Consultant Medical Oncologist and Hemato-Oncologist at Asian Cancer Institute, revealed, “Lung cancer can lead to higher mortality and morbidity rates. The symptoms of this cancer are cough, wheezing, hoarseness, weakness, fatigue, poor appetite, weight loss and even respiratory infections such as pneumonia.”

He added, “The causes of lung cancer can be attributed to smoking, damaging lung tissue, pollution and inhaling hazardous chemical substances but many people fail to recognize the signs of lung cancer in time and tend to suffer in silence. Moreover, people also believe in the myths and neglect this cancer.”

Dr Suhas Aagre dispelled some common myths related to lung cancer:

1. Myth: Only those who smoke will suffer from lung cancer

Fact: This statement is not correct. Not only smokers but even those having a family history of lung cancer, pollution, and second-hand smoking can also raise the risk of lung cancer. It is better to stop thinking that only smokers will suffer from it, it can happen to anyone at any time.

2. Myth: It is not possible to reduce the risk of lung cancer

Fact: One should avoid smoking, stay away from pollution, wear a mask to lower the chances of lung cancer. Apart from that one should eat well, exercise daily, and maintain an optimum weight.

3. Myth: Only senior citizens tend to suffer from lung cancer

Fact: This is not a correct statement. Lung cancer can happen to young children as well as adults. It is also seen in men and women equally. It doesn’t spare anyone or any gender.

4. Myth: Lung cancer means death

Fact: Timely diagnosis and treatment can help with better lung cancer prognosis. So, early detection can save lives.

5. Myth: Surgery for lung cancer can spread cancer further

Fact: Lung cancer is known to spread via the bloodstream and the lymphatic system. You need to be assured as surgery will not cause the spread, or metastasize. In fact, surgery will help to remove the malignant (cancerous) tumor from the lung.

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