According to the American Cancer Society, one in 16 people will be diagnosed with lung cancer in their lifetimes. A key to effectively treating lung cancer and ensuring longevity is early detection and treatment. But given that lung cancer goes undetected for a long time because it doesn’t cause many apparent symptoms, how can you tell if you have lung cancer before it has advanced too much? The answer is understanding your specific risk level and recognizing the signs that should alert you to seek medical attention immediately.
The most common symptoms of lung cancer include:
- Persistent Cough If you have a persistent cough that only gets worse and over the counter medications don’t help it get better, it’s time to see a doctor.
- Blood in Phlegm The presence of blood or rust-colored phlegm should be examined by a doctor immediately.
- Chest Pain If you experience chest pain during deep breathing, coughing, or laughter, it’s a sign your lungs aren’t doing their job adequately. Lung cancer is just one possible cause of this.
- Hoarseness If your voice has changed significantly and you notice hoarseness, it’s a good idea to check in with a doctor.
- Chronic Shortness of Breath If you notice shortness of breath on a regular basis, it’s a sign that something is wrong in the respiratory system and should be examined by a doctor immediately.
- Weight loss or Loss of Appetite Unexplainable weight loss or loss of appetite is a symptom of lung cancer among many other things.
While these symptoms can be caused by other less life-threatening conditions, it is nonetheless important to consult your doctor promptly for a thorough examination, an accurate diagnosis and appropriate treatment. One of the reasons why lung cancer often goes undetected until it has spread significantly is that the symptoms don’t necessarily seem unusual and are associated with a lot of other health conditions. With this in mind, it’s essential not to ignore these symptoms and seek medical attention even when it may seem trivial.
One factor that can help detect and treat lung cancer early on is by understanding your risk. Lifestyle habits like smoking increase the risk of developing lung cancer. If your lifestyle includes smoking, it’s even more important to keep a look out for unusual symptoms.
Another factor to keep in mind is your family’s medical history. If you have close blood relatives who had lung cancer, it means you have a higher risk of developing it, as well. With this in mind, make sure to tell your doctors about your family’s medical history to ensure you are on the lookout for signs and symptoms early on.
If you are diagnosed with lung cancer, there are several treatment options available, depending on the stage of your cancer. These include surgery, chemotherapy, targeted drug therapy, immunotherapy, and radiation therapy. The problem with radiation therapy for lung cancer is that it requires multiple low doses of radiation that can affect other tissue and organs in relatively close proximity to your cancerous tumor.
That said, another option that is just as effective but without the side effects of conventional radiation therapy is the https://www.cyberknifemiami.com/WhatisCyberKnife® system. This painless and non-invasive technique uses robotic image-guided technology to precisely target the tumor and deliver high doses of radiation that poses little to no risk to surrounding tissue or organs. Cleared by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), the CyberKnife system has been clinically proven effective in treating tumors and lesions throughout the body and has been used by hundreds of thousands of patients worldwide for the past 30 years.
If you’ve been diagnosed with lung cancer, do yourself a favor, talk to a CyberKnife expert to see if you are a candidate for this state-of-the-art treatment.
If you’re looking for a safe, painless path to recovery, the dedicated staff at the CyberKnife Center of Miami can discuss your treatment options with you to see what’s best for you. Contact us today at (800) 204-0455 or (305) 279-2900 to learn more about how we can help restore your health. Or simply to arrange an appointment.
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