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November is Lung Cancer Awareness Month

Did you know that lung cancer is by far the leading cause of cancer death for both men and women?

More people die of lung cancer each year as compared to other types of cancer such as colon, breast and prostate cancers combined, data from the Department of Health reveals.

This was also confirmed by Dr. Dean Zenarosa, resident physician of the Philippine Information Agency.

“Lung cancer is one of the common types of cancer in the Philippines, with a high mortality rate,” Zenarosa said.

He added, “That’s why Lung Cancer Awareness Month is commemorated every November to bring attention to the preventive measures and symptoms to watch out for.”

Despite being considered a “silent killer” disease, Zenarosa said early detection is crucial for lung cancer.

He advised the public to visit their primary care provided if they experience the following symptoms:

• Severe coughing

• Wheezing or shortness of breath

• Hoarseness

• Fatigue

• Constant chest pain

• Coughing up blood

• Recurring lung infections

• Sudden weight loss or loss of appetite

“If there’s any suspicion of lung cancer, consult your family physician,” he said.

Nonetheless, he reminded that prevention is still better than cure.

So, how can one reduce the risks of lung cancer?

The physician recommended the following healthy habits:

• Quit or avoid smoking

• Avoid secondhand smoke.

• Avoid radon, a colorless gas found in soil that may seep into households. Testing kits are available to check for radon exposure.

• Avoid carcinogens such as asbestos, uranium, some petroleum, and more.; and

• Observe a healthy diet and exercise regularly

For help quitting, one may call DOH Quitline 1558 for more information. (JCR/JPD, PIA La Union)

About the Author

Joanne Namnama Dilim

Regional Editor

Region 1

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