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    Lung Cancer: Basic Info You Should Know

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    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
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