Jump to content

Article in Forbes Magazine....


Recommended Posts

Suffocatingly Stingy

Peter Jennings' death from lung cancer this summer and the subsequent announcement that Dana Reeve, the widow (who never smoked) of Christopher Reeve, has the disease underscore an ugly fact of American medical research: The study of lung cancer, which annually kills more Americans than liver, colon, prostate and breast cancers combined, is grossly underfunded. It receives only a fraction of the grant money that goes toward research on other cancers, particularly prostate, breast and cervical. For example, even though lung cancer kills four times as many people as breast cancer, the National Cancer Institute last year spent twice as much money on breast cancer as on lung cancer.

No wonder the survival rate from lung cancer has hardly increased over the past 30 years. Why the neglect? In large part because of the notion that those who get lung cancer bring it upon themselves by smoking. Moreover, no public figure has made the affliction his cause, in contrast to the many advocates who push the fight against AIDS and breast and prostate cancers.

Such discrimination must end. Lung cancer is the leading cancer killer worldwide, and the problem is growing. Many sufferers are people who gave up smoking. Moreover, 15% of lung cancer patients never smoked in the first place.

A concerted push for developing early detection methods would pay rich dividends in longevity. Nearly 40% of lung cancer victims are diagnosed when the disease has already metastasized; the survival rate at that point is only 2%. However, the survival rate jumps to almost 50% when this cancer is discovered before it spreads outside the lung. One promising detector is the so-called spiral CT scan, which appears to pick up tumors far better than traditional X rays do. Unbelievably, trials on the accuracy of this scan are being conducted in a leisurely fashion and aren't scheduled to be completed until 2009. A little anti-AIDS-movement-like urgency here could save tens of thousands of lives. A similar spirit of let's-move-on-it-now might speed up the development of promising treatments for the disease itself. For instance, there ought to be more tests, more research done in combining an effective antitumor drug called Tarceva with other therapies.

And we should certainly be doing more to educate young people about the dangers of smoking and second-hand smoke. It's no surprise that most states are spending most of their multibillion-dollar tobacco settlement money on pet political projects instead of on projects targeted toward stopping smoking in the first place. In fact, states would suffer a fiscal calamity if tomorrow morning everyone gave up smoking, thereby depriving local politicians of tens of billions of dollars in cigarette taxes.

Fact and Comment

Steve Forbes, 10.17.05, 12:00 AM ET

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Great article. Thanks for sharing this with us. Every store I have entered lately has been selling something "pink" and donating profits to breast cancer. I know that is important but why can't people open their eyes and see how important it is that we find a cure for lung cancer?

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I've been trying to tactfully have this discussion all month. the world is a SEA of pink, which is admirable, but even a woman I met from the American Cancer Society didn't know that Nov. is lung cancer awareness month in this state.

the discussions that ensue as to WHY this discrapancy in research and activism exists are fascinating and go way beyond smoking.

good article, thanks.


Link to comment
Share on other sites

Like the article mentions, so many states are dependant on the tax money generated by cigarettes that they have no incentive to prevent the start or develope programs to really help people quit. My husband suffers from Small cell lung cancer that has spread to his brain. He still smokes a pack or more a day. That's how devestating this addiction is.


Husband Alan DX with small cell lung cancer Jan 10th 2005

Link to comment
Share on other sites

When I went into the Cancer Center this morning for my bloodwork, they had a counter full of brochures and pink breast cancer pins. I asked if they had them coming for next month too -- the receptionist wanted to know why! So, of course I told her!

I will probably order some of the clear wrist bands and send them to the morning news crew that I think might give this some attention, and then to my own cancer center!

Admittedly, this center was formed to focus on breast cancer, but since they take on all kinds, and have patients from all over come there for their clinical trials, they could at least give some attention elsewhere, IMO.


Link to comment
Share on other sites

Thanks for sending this article honey...but it really does p$$$ me off.because it is true.....

That's all you see is pink...pink....pink...and that is fine and I am happy that they are doing such great research on breast cancer....BUT what about us...are "we a piece of chopped liver"???....We pay taxes...we should be getting the same research....Sure does make you want to feel like an outcast...but I refuse to do so...and to think that we "did" it to ourselves is absolutly ludicrest....grrrrr...the more I am writing the madder I am getting....Oh sure!!!!....we 'wanted' to get LC ...so we smoked....come on!!!...give me a break...there are 150 ways to get LC....so wish someone would recognise that and cut us some slack....

You would think because LC may be fatal many times...and BC is highly curable if caught early..that they would concentrate on LC more....I don't know ...maybe it's me and am having a bad day...but something is wrong with this picture....and if I get too PSSST...might be ME standing in front of Bush's house one day...ha

BTW...I am wearing my clear braclet and got each one of my sister's one too...so there!! ha

Ok...nuff here from the peanut gallery...sorry to have vented...but I knew you would understand....hugs and prayers to all...Pam S.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Yes, in Philadelphia, all of the city fountains have pink water and all of the buildings, including City Hall, are either glowing with pink light, or have neon pink lights illuminating the sky. The Philadelphia Eagles are selling pink t-shirts, pink hats, and running commercials nonstop.....and while I do believe wholeheartedly that it is a worthy cause, I can't help but admit some serious jealousy. What cruel twist of fate put "our" month following "theirs"? :roll:

Link to comment
Share on other sites

That article is great , IT SPEAKS THE TRUTH! Boy isn't that refreshing.

Yes, pink shirts at Target ( money going to breast cancer research) Pink at the Mall, pink at the grocery store, pink pink pink.

I have said before that the Federal Gov't and states depend on smokers to balance the budgets.

It also seems to me that every month is breast cancer month, May for mothers day, October , etc etc.

Donna G

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Restore formatting

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

  • Create New...

Important Information

By using this site, you agree to our Terms of Use. We have placed cookies on your device to help make this website better. You can adjust your cookie settings, otherwise we'll assume you're okay to continue.