6 factors that increases risk of lung cancer.


Symptoms of lung cancer varies among people. Based on cdc.govsymptoms of lung cancer includes coughing that worsen or does not go away, chest pain, whistling sound when breathing, coughing up blood, fatigue and unexplained weight loss.

Most people with lung cancer do not have any symptoms until the cancer is in an advanced stage. Certain people whose lung cancer has spread to other parts of the body (known as metastasized) have symptoms specific to that part of the body. Certain people only have general symptoms of not feeling well.

Lung cancer may sometimes have other changes like repeated bouts of pneumonia and swollen or enlarged lymph nodes (glands) inside the chest in the area between the lungs.

These symptoms may be caused by other illnesses. Therefore, if you have any of these, it is recommended to consult a doctor.


Smoking is by far the leading risk factor for lung cancer. About 80% of lung cancer deaths are the result of smoking.

The risk of lung cancer for people who smoke is many times higher than for people who don’t smoke. The longer you smoke and the more packs a day you smoke, the greater your risk.

Cigar and pipe smoking are almost as likely to cause lung cancer as cigarette smoking. Smoking low-tar or “light” cigarettes increases lung cancer risk as much as regular cigarettes. Smoking menthol cigarettes might increase the risk even more since the menthol may allow people to inhale more deeply.

Exposure to Secondhand Smoker

People who do not smoke but are exposed to secondhand smoke are inhaling many of the same cancer-causing substances and poisons that are inhaled by people who smoke.

Adults who do not smoke and are exposed to secondhand smoke increase their risk of developing lung cancer by 20–30%.

Exposure to Radon

Radon is a naturally-occurring radioactive gas that is inert, colourless and odourless. According to EPA estimates, radon is the leading cause of lung cancer among non-smokers.

Exposure to asbestos

People who work in mines, mills, textile plants, places where insulation is used, and shipyards are several times more likely to die of lung cancer due to the exposure of asbestos. Lung cancer risk is higher in workers who smokes and also exposed to asbestos. However, it is not clear how much low-level or short-term exposure to asbestos will increase the risk of lung cancer.

Malaysia has totally banned the use of asbestos in government building since 2005. However, there is no laws and regulations imposed on prohibiting the use of asbestos in private buildings.

Radiation Therapy

People who has been exposed to radiation therapy to the chest previously such as certain lymphoma or breast cancer patients, has higher risk of getting lung cancer.

Family history of lung cancer

People whose close family member ie.parents, siblings has history of having lung cancer are at a higher risk of getting lung cancer.

If you are a smoker or exposed to any of the risks above, it is recommended to speak to your doctor to weigh the pros and cons of getting a scan to detect for lung cancer.

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