Lung cancer is one of the common cancers which affects the lung tissues and is the leading cause of deaths worldwide.
What it is?
Prevention against any disease actually works when exposure to its causative and/or risk factors (anything that increases the chances of developing cancer) are prevented. Similarly, prevention against lung cancer or reducing the chances of getting it, works only when appropriate measures are taken to avoid the risk factors.
How does cancer prevention work?
Cancer prevention, helps reduce the risk factor exposure, thereby helps reduce the number of new cases of cancer. Hence, lowering the number of deaths caused by cancer.
Causative, Risk factors and protective factors of Lung cancer
- Causative vs risk factor – The causative factor is the direct and evident cause for a cancer type to occur whereas the risk factor increases the chances of getting the cancer. The risk factor for any type of cancer, could be both avoidable and non-avoidable.
- For example, smoking and genetic causes, both are risk factors for lung cancer but only smoking can be avoided.
- Protective factor – Protective factor, as the word is suggestive itself, provides protection against a particular cancer type by decreasing the chances of getting it.
- For example, regular exercise, balanced and healthy diet.
Preventive measures against Lung cancer
Increased exposure to protective factors for lung cancer:
- Protective factors
- Stop smoking
- Avoid secondhand or passive smoking
- Reduced occupational exposure to cancer causing agents
- Reduce exposure to rado
Reduced exposure to risk factors:
- Cigarette/cigar smoking – direct or secondhand
- HIV infection
- Any history of radiation therapy
- Environmental risk factors – exposure to occupational carcinogens such as asbestos, arsenic, chromium, nickel, etc.
- Increased air pollution
- Family history
Lifestyle and habit modifications:
- Regular exercise or being more physically active ultimately promotes your overall fitness and builds-up energy level
- Ways to strengthen and improve the immune system
- Switch to a healthy & balanced diet rich in fruits and vegetables
Author: Dr Ghanshyam Biswas