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Did you have a cough lasting three weeks or more?
Many people don’t realise that a cough for three weeks or more could be a sign of lung cancer, so it is vital that patients act on a persistent cough and don’t wait to see if it resolves on its own.
While a cough for three weeks or more is probably nothing serious, it can be a sign of something that needs treatment. If it is cancer, finding it early means it is more treatable and can save lives.
Key facts and statistics
- Lung cancer GP referrals have been the slowest of all cancer types to recover since the start of the pandemic
- Lung cancer is the third most common cancer in England with around 39,990 cases diagnosed each year. Around 89% of those are aged 60 and over
- Lung cancer is England’s biggest cause of cancer death. In 2021, around 26,400 people died from lung cancer in England
- In 2019, lung cancer accounted for 12% of all cancer diagnoses in England and 20% of all cancer deaths
- Five-year survival for persons diagnosed with stage 1 lung cancer is 61% compared with just 4% for those diagnosed with late stage (stage 4) lung cancer
- Between 1995 and 2019, age-standardised incidence rates of lung cancer have increased from 50.8 per 100,000 to 67.1 per 100,000 for females. In males age-standardised incidence rates of lung cancer have decreased from 126.6 per 100,000 to 84.9 per 100,000
- Between 2001 and 2019, age-standardised mortality rates of lung cancer have remained relatively stable between 44.7 per 100,000 and 43.4 per 100,000 for females. In males age-standardised mortality rates of lung cancer have decreased from 95.7 per 100,000 to 61.5 per 100,00
- The incidence of lung cancer increases with age: 89% of cases are diagnosed in those aged 60 and older
Published: Aug 5, 2022
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