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Lung Cancer Harms Women Silently

An interesting study about the lack of noticeable symptoms may explain, in part, why Dana Reeve died so tragically and far too early from lung cancer last year.

Scientists believe the relative absence of chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), the permanent reduction of lung functioning, among women may be deceptive, based on a study of nearly 300 men and women newly diagnosed with lung cancer. Some 73 percent of the male patients had COPD, compared to just 52 percent of women. And, among those who were smokers, the difference in percentages between women and men were close to identical.

Another good reason for the reminder: Experts consider lung cancer to be the deadliest one out of all of them (in the same league as pancreatic cancer) with a 15 percent survival rate beyond five years.

That said, there are preventative measures you can take -- none of which have anything to do with taking a drug -- that virtually eliminate your risk of cancer. Three recommendations to get you started:

Chest, Vol. 129, No. 5, May 2006: 1305-1312

Yahoo News May 8, 2006

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