KEARNEY, NEB. — The National Cancer Institute estimates more than 200,000 cases of Lung and Bronchus cancer will be found this year alone. The experts at CHI Health said folks should get screened sooner rather than later.
“Once somebody gets to the place where the disease is taking over the lungs, obviously that makes recovery and longevity a much more difficult process."
CHI Health Counselor Kim Burr, said there are many signs to watch for, some more subtle than others.
“Really anytime someone has new symptoms in their lungs such as cough, hoarseness, shortness of breath, really need to be checked out with your physician."
Burr said one major contributing factor – something that can cause these symptoms is tobacco use and vaping – both of which she said can leave particles in your lungs.
“Some of those things would be carcinogens, micro-fine particles, heavy metals, micro-fine particles of heavy metal, that getting into the lungs and staying there and causing damage.”
Or even worse, cancer. With November being Lung Cancer Awareness Month, Burr said getting lung cancer is not specific to one person. According to the Lungevity Foundation, every two minutes someone is diagnosed with lung cancer. Burr said the best way to know is to be screened early.
“To help people survive lung cancer.”
The screening process involves a low-dose CT scan that takes pictures of your lungs. She said smoking increases your chance of getting lung cancer. There are resources out there for those that want to quit.
“A lot of times people need a little support to put together a plan that works for their lifestyle and their particular style of use so that we can get them to a place where they feel confident and capable of getting to that point where they can say I quit," said Burr.
If you or someone you know is a smoker and is ready to quit, call the Nebraska Tobacco-Free Quitline at 1-800 QUIT NOW. For information on how to sign up for Lung Cancer screening at CHI Health, click or tap here.