World Cancer Day 2019: Lung cancer is the most common cancer diagnosed worldwide and accounts for 6.9 percent of all new cancer cases in India. According to Globocan 2018 data which includes estimates of incidence, mortality rate and prevalence of 36 types of cancers in 185 countries of the world, lung cancer is the second most common cancer in Indian men with 48,698 new cases in the year 2018, and 19,097 cases among females.
“Since the symptoms of lung cancer mimic the symptoms of tuberculosis, the diagnosis of lung cancer often gets delayed. Smokers need to be more alert to these symptoms. It is very important to seek early medical advice from a doctor because lung cancer is curable only if detected early”, said Dr Jyoti Wadhwa, director, Department of Medical Oncology, Medanta The Medicity Hospital, Gurgaon.
It is important to know the early warning signs of this disease so that its treatment can be provided without delay. Here are some of the early signs of lung cancer that you shouldn’t ignore.
A persistent cough can be a sign of a deadly disease like lung cancer.
Shortness of breath
At times breathlessness comes due to low stamina or lack of fitness. But if it continues or feels unnatural, it might be a good idea to consult the doctor once.
Usually, lung cancer causes chest pain because of enlarged lymph nodes or metastasis. So it is better to have a regular check.
Unexplained loss of appetite
When a patient is suffering from lung cancer, they complain about losing interest in food. It is one of the symptoms of lung cancer one should never ignore.
Sudden weight loss
If there is a drastic drop in your weight without any dietary changes or changes in the level of physical activity, it might be time for a body check-up.
“It is important to be aware of the risk factors and symptoms of lung cancer. One must avoid all known possible risk factors for its prevention. Lung cancer is curable in early stages. Unfortunately, more than half the patients get diagnosed in advanced stages due to lack of awareness. It is important to note that effective treatments for lung cancer are available now even for those with the advanced stage of cancer. Early detection is the key to fight lung cancer”, said Dr Wadhwa.