Skip to content

    Lung Cancer Health Center

    Select An Article

    Lung Cancer: Basic Info You Should Know

    (continued)
    Font Size
    A
    A
    A

    Causes

    Smoking is the biggest reason. It’s responsible for about 85% of all cases.

    Quitting cuts the risk. Former smokers are still slightly more likely to get it than nonsmokers.

    There are also other reasons. Some genetic glitches may put some people at higher risk. 

    Secondhand tobacco smoke is also a cause. People who live with someone who smokes are 20% to 30% more likely to get lung cancer than those who live in a smoke-free home.

    Some other chemicals are risky, too. People who work with asbestos or are exposed to uranium dust or the radioactive gas radon are more likely to get lung cancer, especially if they smoke.

    Lung tissue that was scarred by a disease or infection, such as scleroderma or tuberculosis, becomes at risk for tumors in that tissue. Doctors call this a scar carcinoma.

    Some researchers think that diet may also influence your risk. But that’s not clear yet.

    WebMD Medical Reference

    Reviewed by Suchita Pakkala, MD on May 26, 2016
    1 | 2
    Next Article:

    Today on WebMD

    Xray analysis
    Do you know the myths from the facts?
    chest x-ray
    Get to know them.
     
    woman taking pills
    Tips to managing them.
    Lung cancer xray
    See it in pictures, plus read the facts.
     
    Lung Cancer Risks Myths and Facts
    SLIDESHOW
    Woman getting ct scan
    Article
     
    Improving Lung Cancer Survival Targeted Therapy
    VIDEO
    cancer fighting foods
    Article
     
    Lung Cancer Surprising Differences Between Sexes
    VIDEO
    Pets Improve Your Health
    SLIDESHOW
     
    Vitamin D
    SLIDESHOW
    Lung Cancer Surgery Options
    VIDEO