Myths, Facts & Stats about Lung Cancer You Should Know

did you know that lung cancer is the leading cause of cancer death in men and women in the United States? It’s true. In fact, according to the American Cancer Society, more people die from lung cancer each year than from any other type of cancer. 

But what do you know about lung cancer? How much do you know about the myths and facts surrounding this disease? This post will break down some of the most important information about lung cancer, including the latest stats and facts. So read on to learn more.

Myths About Lung Cancer

If You Don’t Smoke, You Can’t Get Lung Cancer

Wrong. While smoking is the leading cause of lung cancer, about 20 percent of women and 15 percent of men who develop the disease have never smoked.

Smoking isn’t the only risk factor for developing lung cancer. Other risks include:

  • Secondhand smoke
  • Exposure to certain chemicals and pollutants
  • Family history of lung cancer
  • Personal history of cancer
  • Radiation therapy to the chest

While you can’t do anything about your family history or past radiation exposure, there are things you can do to reduce your risk, like quitting smoking and avoiding secondhand smoke.

Lung Cancer is Always Deadly

Although lung cancer is most often found in later stages, its five-year survival rate is low when it has already diffused.

Even though cancer in its early stages is treatable, it’s crucial to catch it as soon as possible. If you have cancer that can’t be cured, treatment can help you live longer and feel better.

Only Adults Can Get Lung Cancer

Lung cancer can occur at any age, even in children. The most common type of lung cancer in children is a neuroendocrine tumor. These tumors are more likely to be found in younger than adult patients.

While the overall incidence of lung cancer is higher in adults, the disease does not discriminate. If you or your child has symptoms of lung cancer, it’s essential to see a doctor immediately.

Facts About Lung Cancer

It Is the Most Common Type of Cancer Worldwide

Lung cancer is the most common type of cancer worldwide. Approximately 85% of all lung cancers are attributable to smoking tobacco. Worldwide, it is estimated that tobacco smoking causes about 22% of all male deaths and 14% of all female deaths each year.

Early Lung Cancer Doesn’t Cause Any Symptoms

Indeed, most lung cancers do not cause symptoms until they have spread, which is why regular screenings are so important. When symptoms present themselves, they may include a new cough that doesn’t go away, shortness of breath, coughing up blood, and pain in the chest or shoulder.

Smoking Is the Leading Cause of Lung Cancer

Smoking is the leading cause of lung cancer. In the United States, smoking is responsible for about 80% of all lung cancer deaths in men and women. Cigarette smoking causes an estimated 87% of lung cancer cases among men and 70% among women.

Secondhand smoke from other people’s cigarettes, cigars, or pipes is also a significant health risk. Secondhand smoke causes an estimated 16% of lung cancer cases among nonsmoking men and women in the United States.


Awareness of the myths, facts, and statistics about lung cancer is important. With this knowledge, you can make informed decisions about your health and treatment options.

If you or someone you know has been diagnosed with lung cancer, the American Cancer Society can provide more information and support.

Recent posts