It’s important to be aware of the signs and symptoms of lung cancer, particularly as we age. If lung cancer is found at an early stage, there is more chance of a better health outcome.
Your age won’t impact your chances of surviving lung cancer, but when you visit a doctor and become diagnosed could have an impact.
That’s why we have put together a list of tips for early Lung Cancer detection:
1. Determine if you are high-risk for developing Lung Cancer.
Lung Cancer screening can be recommended for certain people who are at a high risk for developing the disease. Current or former smoking, family history of lung cancer, or exposure to asbestos are all considered risk factors of developing lung cancer. It’s always worth speaking to your doctor about your history to determine whether you are at risk.
2. Keep an eye out for symptoms.
While a lot of lung cancers don’t cause symptoms until they have spread, there are some people with early lung cancer who develop noticeable symptoms. When you first notice symptoms go straight to the doctor. While most of these symptoms are more likely to be caused by something other than lung cancer, it is still important to be aware of them, and if you have problems see your doctor right away.
Here are some of the most common symptoms:
- a cough that doesn’t go away after 2 or 3 weeks.
- chest pain and/or shoulder pain or discomfort – the pain may be worse with coughing or deep breathing.
- a long-standing cough that gets worse.
- chest infections that keep coming back.
- coughing up blood.
- an ache or pain when breathing or coughing.
- persistent breathlessness.
- persistent tiredness or lack of energy.
3. Check your lungs.
Research shows that almost half (46%) of all Australians rarely or never think about their lung health. Yet 1 in 3 Australians will be impacted by lung disease or lung cancer. Lung Foundation Australia has created a great checklist, to help you check your lung health at home: https://lunghealth.lungfoundation.com.au/lung-health-checklist/
As always if you have any concerns about your health it’s best to arrange an appointment with your doctor. But if you have any questions you can always feel comfortable contacting your Care Manager for support or advice on 1300 307 344