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Lung Cancer

January 25, 2011 | Melissa Healy, Los Angeles Times
The breast cancer drug tamoxifen may stall the progression of non-small cell lung cancer in those who take it after breast cancer treatment, a new study has found. Tamoxifen is the oldest of a wide array of medications that block the action of the hormone estrogen in the body. Researchers have found growing evidence in recent years that the majority of non-small cell lung cancers -- the most common form of lung cancer -- respond to estrogen with growth. So they wondered whether women taking tamoxifen as an adjunct to their breast cancer treatment might be less likely to develop or die of lung cancer.
November 10, 2010 | By Mary Forgione, Los Angeles Times
Lung cancer, found in later stages, offers little hope. Randy Zisook was one of those diagnosed with advanced stages of lung cancer. Toward the end of his life, he warned others about the dangers of cigarette smoking by sharing his diagnosis and his story in a very public way. "This is going to affect all of us for the rest of our lives," says his wife, Lori Zisook, who has vowed to continue her husband’s awareness campaign. She recounts his life and explains her crusade in this Chicago Tribune story . Early detection is difficult, but not impossible, as explained in this Los Angeles Times story about CT scans.
January 9, 2014 | By Melissa Healy
Invasive lung cancer, still the leading cause of cancer deaths in the United States, claimed fewer lives over the five-year period ending in 2009, says a report issued Thursday by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Driven largely by the success of anti-tobacco campaigns, the decline in lung cancer was greater in men than in women, however. The grim result: a longstanding gender gap, in which women have lagged behind men in lung cancer rates, is narrowing. Fifty years after the U.S. surgeon general declared tobacco a hazard to the public's health, more than a million new cases of lung cancer were diagnosed from 2005 to 2009, according to the CDC's latest accounting.
October 29, 2012 | By Melissa Healy, Los Angeles Times, For the Booster Shots Blog
Patients diagnosed with lung cancer that is considered incurable appear to misunderstand the purpose and likely effect of a treatment aimed at making them more comfortable, a new study says. The result may not only be a failure of communication between physicians and their patients: The misunderstanding also may prompt some lung cancer patients and their families to choose aggressive treatments near the end of life rather than opt for care that makes their final days more comfortable.
June 30, 2011
Screening heavy smokers for lung cancer does reduce deaths, without leading to too many dangerous follow-up tests, and researchers now have the numbers to prove it. That question would appear to be settled. But the cash to implement such a program … now that’s another issue entirely. The analysis validating lung-cancer screening via spiral CT scans comes from a trial of more than 53,000 patients. Researchers found that giving smokers and ex-smokers chest CT scans could reduce lung cancer deaths by 20%. In another way of interpreting the data, 320 smokers and ex-smokers needed to be screened to prevent one death.  The full story is in this Los Angeles Times article . For many diseases, screening is often deemed “not worth it” in part because of the harm done to people who test positive but don’t have the disease (false positives)
June 19, 2013 | By David L. Ulin, Los Angeles Times Book Critic
Kim Thompson, who spent more than three decades as co-owner and co-publisher of the Seattle-based comics imprint Fantagraphics Books , died Wednesday morning of lung cancer. He was 56. Thompson was born in Denmark and came to the United States in 1977. He was diagnosed with cancer in late February. At the time, he expressed his hope and confidence that he would “lick this thing.” After his death, his long-time friend and partner Gary Groth issued a statement defining Thompson's legacy as not just a matter of “all the European graphic novels that would never have been published here if not for his devotion, knowledge, and skills, but for all the American cartoonists he edited, ranging from Stan Sakai to Joe Sacco to Chris Ware, and his too infrequent critical writing about the medium.
June 12, 2012 | By Julie Cart
The world's most prestigious cancer research group on Tuesday classified diesel engine exhaust as carcinogenic to humans and concluded that exposure is associated with increased risk of lung cancer. The International Agency for Research on Cancer - part of the World Health Organization - made the announcement at a meeting in France, finding, in part, “that diesel exhaust is a cause of lung cancer, and also noted a positive association with an increased risk of bladder cancer.
June 27, 2005 | From Reuters
Black cigarette smokers with a parent or sibling who developed lung cancer at an early age are more likely to get the disease than white smokers with the same family history, researchers have found. The reason for the disparity is not clear, but it could be that blacks are more susceptible to lung cancer or there may be some other risk factor, said the report from Detroit's Wayne State University.
December 24, 2013 | By Barbara Demick
BEIJING - The youngest known lung cancer patient in eastern China is an 8-year-old girl whose home is next to a dust-choked road in heavily industrialized Jiangsu province. Another patient was a 14-year-old girl from Shanghai, the daughter of two nonsmokers with no family history of lung cancer. Back in the 1970s, when Bai Chunxue was in medical school, the textbook lung cancer patient was a chain-smoking male in his 60s. Nowadays, Bai, one of the physicians who treated the teen, sees so many who are still in their 20s that the cases blend together.
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