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Lung Cancer In Indiana

Lung cancer is by far the leading cause of cancer death among both men and women in the United States, accounting for about 27% of all cancer deaths. Each year, more people die of lung cancer than of colon, breast, and prostate cancers combined. An estimated 150,000 Americans and approximately 3,800 Indiana residents die from the disease every year.

Lung cancer mainly occurs in older people. About 2 out of 3 people diagnosed with lung cancer are 65 or older; fewer than 2% of all cases are found in people younger than 45. The average age at the time of diagnosis is about 70.

Recent community health research conducted by Franciscan St. Francis Health ranks Marion, Morgan, Hendricks and Shelby counties among the worst in the state of Indiana for adults who smoke, incidence of lung cancer and death rates from the disease.

Key Facts About Lung Cancer in Indiana:

lung cancer facts
  • 3,800 Indiana residents die from lung cancer every year.
  • In Indiana, 24 percent of adults continue to smoke tobacco, placing them at great risk for developing lung and other types of cancer.
  • In 2012, 26.5 percent of adult males and 21.6 percent of adult females reported being current smokers.
  • Indiana’s adult smoking rate remains among the highest in the nation.
  • During 2007-2011, Indiana males to females had a 50 percent cancer incidence rate and a 70 percent greater mortality rate. This is mainly because a higher percentage of males have been smokers compared to females.
  • African American males in Indiana have approximately 16 percent greater incidence and 20 percent greater lung cancer mortality rates than do white males.
  • Each year, an estimated 50,000 American and 1,240 Hoosier nonsmokers die from exposure to secondhand smoke (smoke breathed in involuntarily by someone who is not smoking).

Understanding Lung Cancer

Lung cancer is not a single disease; rather, it is a group of cancers that originate in the lungs and associated tissues. The two main types are small cell lung cancer and non-small cell lung cancer. These types are diagnosed based on how the cells look under a microscope.

  • Small cell: The cells of small cell lung cancer look small under a microscope. About 1 of every 8 people with lung cancer has small cell lung cancer.
  • Non-small cell: The cells of non-small cell lung cancer are larger than the cells of small cell lung cancer. Most (about 7 of every 8) people diagnosed with lung cancer have non-small cell lung cancer. It doesn't grow and spread as fast as small cell lung cancer, and it's treated differently.

Learn more about lung cancer

Early detection is the key to beating lung cancer. Most lung cancers are first diagnosed based on symptoms. Unfortunately, symptoms often don’t occur until the disease is in a late stage when treatment options are limited.
Symptoms of lung cancer are not very specific and generally reflect damage to the lungs’ ability to function normally. The most common symptoms are:

  • Persistent, worsening cough that will not go away
  • Spitting up small amounts of blood
  • Chest pain or discomfort
  • Changes in the voice or being hoarse
  • Recurrent pneumonia or bronchitis
  • Unexplained weight loss or loss of appetite

Learn more about lung cancer symptoms

$69 Lung Scan
Franciscan St. Francis Health was the first in Indiana and one of the first in the nation to offer a lung CT screening program to detect lung cancer earlier. A lung scan is safe and non-invasive. Since smoking also increases the risk of heart disease, a Heart Scan is included for free.  Learn More

Prevention of Lung Cancer

quit smokingSmoking is by far the leading cause of lung cancer and accounts for 87 percent of lung cancer deaths and at least 30 percent of all cancer deaths. If all tobacco smoking were stopped, the occurrence of lung cancer would decrease by an estimated 90 percent. Exposure to secondhand smoke and environmental exposures, such as radon and workplace toxins, also increase your risk. A family history of cancer can also be a risk factor for lung cancer.

The earlier in life a person starts smoking, the more often a person smokes, and the more years a person smokes, the greater the risk of lung cancer. If a person has stopped smoking, the risk becomes lower as the years pass.

Want to break free of tobacco? The Aspire Tobacco Free program can help.

Protecting Your Lungs

Treatment of Lung Cancer

Surgery, radiation, chemotherapy, and targeted treatments—alone or in combination based on the stage of the cancer—are used to treat lung cancer. Each of these types of treatments may cause different side effects.

Learn more about lung cancer treatment

Learn more about the Franciscan St. Francis Health Lung Cancer Program

The single most important thing you can do to reduce the risk of lung cancer is to quit smoking – get help now with the ASPIRE tobacco free program.

Aspire Tobacco Free Program

Smoking is both a habit and an addiction. Most people try to quit seven to ten times before they are successful. To finally break free, Aspire helps you confront both the habit and the addiction. Learn more

Lung cancer is often diagnosed at a later stage – early detection is the key to survival- click here to learn more about the $69 ct scan program at franciscan st francis.

$69 Lung Scan Program

If you are a long-time smoker, you may qualify for a $69 Lung CT Scan, a simple screening to detect lung cancer early before significant symptoms occur.  Learn more

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