Expert warns of increase in lung cancer cases among women

Mrs Labara Larai, Head, Cancer Unit, Public Health Department, FCT, has warned of an increased number of women suffering from lung cancer in Nigeria.

“As cigarette smoking trend is increasing among the women in this country, lung cancer is expected to increase among the women in the next two or three decades,” she said.

Larai told the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Abuja on Sunday that lung cancer was most common in men than in women, especially in developing nations.

She said following the tobacco trend in developing world, 76 per cent of lung cancer in men and 28 per cent in women were associated with cigarette smoking.

“The burden of lung cancer in any country was related to the duration and the amount of cigarette smoked in that country.”

Larai explained that lung cancer had a lot to do with long period of smoking habit, especially in old age, adding that it could also result from air pollution and inhalation of noxious substances and dust, radiation and nuclear fallouts as well as occupational exposures to harmful compounds, such as asbestos.

“The signs and symptoms are uncontrollable cough with blood (stained sputum), the wind pipe and lung tissue affected, difficulty in breathing, chest pain, recurrent chest infection and a lack of appetite,” she said.

Larai listed other symptoms as weight loss and anaemia. She stated that one sure way to prevent lung cancer was for people to stop cigarette smoking.

“People need to visit hospitals for cessation advice if they find it difficult to stop smoking.

“They also should wear face masks and other appropriate clothing if they work in areas that may expose them to cancer causing agents,” she warned (NAN).

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