14 July 2016
Responding to new figures released today by Public Health England which show that around 80,000 people could be living with undiagnosed lung cancer1, Dr Fran Woodard, Executive Director of Policy and Impact at Macmillan Cancer Support, says:
“It is extremely worrying that so many people could be living with lung cancer without being aware of it because the sooner someone is diagnosed, the greater their chances of surviving the disease.
“Things to look out for include a cough, hoarse voice or chest infection which has lasted three weeks or more, and if you notice any of these please go and see your GP to get checked out as they could be warning signs of lung cancer.
“If you are diagnosed with lung cancer there are treatments available including surgery, radiotherapy and chemotherapy. Macmillan also has a range of support on our website from information on common symptoms to look out for to an online support group of people with lung cancer.”
For further information, please contact:
Claire Rushforth, Senior Media & PR Officer, Macmillan Cancer Support
020 7840 4872 (out of hours 07801 307068)
Notes to Editors:
1Source: S Hinde et al. (2015) Modelling the cost effectiveness of public awareness campaigns for the early detection of non-small-cell lung cancer. British Journal of Cancer. 135–141. Access via: http://www.nature.com/bjc/journal/v113/n1/full/bjc2015167a.html [Accessed 28 June 2016]
What are the different types of lung cancer?
There are two main types of primary lung cancer. They behave in different ways and respond to treatment differently. They are:
1. Non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC): the most common type.
2. Small cell lung cancer (SCLC): makes up about 10% of lung cancers (1 in 10).
What are the symptoms?
The most common symptoms of lung cancer are:
• a cough for three weeks or more
• a change in a cough you’ve had for a long time
• a chest infection that doesn’t get better, or repeated chest infections
• feeling breathless and wheezy for no reason
• coughing up blood
• chest or shoulder pain that doesn’t get better
• a hoarse voice for three weeks or more.
• Lung cancer is the UK's second most commonly diagnosed cancer.
• 72,000 people are currently living with lung cancer and over 40,000 are diagnosed each year in the UK.
• Lung cancer has one of the lowest 5-year survival rates of all cancers (9.7% of men and 12.5% of women are alive five years after their diagnosis).
• It is the biggest killer of all cancers, with over 35,000 people dying every year from lung cancer in the UK.
About Macmillan Cancer Support
When you have cancer, you don’t just worry about what will happen to your body, you worry about what will happen to your life. Whether it’s concerns about who you can talk to, planning for the extra costs or what to do about work, at Macmillan we understand how a cancer diagnosis can take over everything.
That’s why we’re here. We provide support that helps people take back control of their lives. But right now, we can’t reach everyone who needs us. We need your help to make sure that people affected by cancer get the support they need to face the toughest fight of their life. No one should face cancer alone, and with your support no one will.
To get involved, call 0300 1000 200 today. And please remember, we’re here for you too. If you’d like support, information or just to chat, call us free on 0808 808 00 00 (Monday to Friday, 9am–8pm) or visit macmillan.org.uk