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Lung Cancer - Topic Overview

Treatment for lung cancer may include surgery, chemotherapy, radiation, or a combination of these therapies. Targeted therapy and laser therapy may also be used.

Few lung cancers are found in the early stages when treatment is most effective. When lung cancer is found before it has spread outside the lungs, about half of these people will live at least 5 more years.2 After lung cancer has spread outside the lungs, how long a person lives usually depends on how far the cancer has spread (the stage) by the time it is found.

Finding out that you have cancer can change your life. You may feel like your world has turned upside down and you have lost all control. Talking with family, friends, or a counselor can really help. Ask your doctor about support groups. Or call the American Cancer Society (1-800-227-2345) or visit its website at www.cancer.org.

Lung cancer that is caused by smoking can be prevented. So it is important to stop smoking—or to stop being around someone else's smoke.

Even if you have smoked a long time, quitting can lower your chances of getting cancer. If you already have lung cancer, quitting makes your treatment work better and can help you live longer.

Learning about lung cancer:

Being diagnosed:

Getting treatment:

Ongoing concerns:

Living with lung cancer:

Supportive care:

This information is produced and provided by the National Cancer Institute (NCI). The information in this topic may have changed since it was written. For the most current information, contact the National Cancer Institute via the Internet web site at http:// cancer .gov or call 1-800-4-CANCER.

WebMD Medical Reference from Healthwise

Last Updated: September 19, 2013
This information is not intended to replace the advice of a doctor. Healthwise disclaims any liability for the decisions you make based on this information.
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