Clearing the Air on Lung Cancer Risk Factors and Prevention

Published on November 2, 2010

Updated on February 13, 2018

Did you know lung cancer kills more people per year than breast, prostate, colon and pancreatic cancers combined? While it is true that not smoking is a major way to prevent lung cancer, we want to clear the air on a few other important preventive measures one can take to stay healthy. And there’s no better time to do so than during Lung Cancer Awareness month!

Since 2004, the Prevent Cancer Foundation has hosted a series of annual workshops focused on the application of high resolution CT imaging data to the development of new therapies for the management of early lung cancer, attacking the disease at a stage when it is much more likely to have a successful outcome.

The meeting brings together a multidisciplinary group of scientists who rarely find themselves in the same room, enabling cross-disciplinary input and a variety of perspectives to be shared.

This year, the Foundation’s seventh annual Lung Cancer Workshop identified advances in spiral CT scanning to assess the effectiveness of new therapies, discussed the common elements between lung cancer and other pulmonary diseases, and explored the value of open access publications. The meeting series has resulted in the development of several open access imaging databases, eight publications in scientific journals and two innovative clinical trial designs for promising new lung cancer therapies.

In addition to fostering scientific advances in lung cancer early detection, the Prevent Cancer Foundation is also a resource to help educate yourself and take control of your health. It can start right here by reading these facts and following the risk reduction strategies below that might just help save your life or the life of a friend or family member.


  • Lung Cancer is one of eight preventable cancers.
  • Lung cancer is the leading cause of cancer death for both men and women.
  • An estimated 222,529 people will be diagnosed and an estimated 157,300 will die of lung cancer in 2010.
  • Lung cancer accounts for about 15 percent of all new cancer diagnoses and about 28 percent of all cancer deaths in 2010 estimates.
  • Lung cancer accounts for more deaths in both men and women than any other cancer.
  • Tobacco use is the most important risk factor for lung cancer.


    • Don’t smoke.Don’t smoke.
    • Avoid second-hand smoke
    • Create smoke-free environments in your home and community.
    • Check your home for radon (Qualified contractors can be located through state radon offices, which are listed on the EPA web site)
    • Eat lots of fruits and vegetables.
    • Be physically active and exercise regularly.
    • A spiral CT scan can detect early lung cancer in people who are smokers and former smokers. Research is under way to determine whether spiral CT screening reduces death from lung cancer.
    • Speak with your health care professional to learn more about the risks and benefits of this approach.

    Learn more about reducing cancer risk on the Prevent Cancer Foundation’s Web site.

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