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Nation's #1 Cancer Killer Doesn't Have To Be- Article 10/25


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Nation's Number-one Cancer Killer Doesn't Have To Be

October 25, 2006

WASHINGTON -- The following is a statement by the American Legacy Foundation®:

New research released today shows great promise in the early diagnosis of lung cancer -- a major public health breakthrough. Lung cancer is the nation's number-one cancer killer. Each year in the U.S., 173,000 people are diagnosed with lung cancer and 160,000 will die from it.

Dr. Claudia Henschke, the study's lead author, found that lung cancer can be detected at its very earliest stage in 85 percent of patients by using CT scans. When diagnosis is followed by prompt surgical removal, the 10-year survival rate for lung cancer patients is 92 percent. Early diagnostic tools, such as these scans, are part of the solution to overcoming the nation's number-one cancer killer, lung cancer. Henschke's research, from a team at New York-Presbyterian Hospital/Weill Cornell Medical Center, was published in the New England Journal of Medicine today.

If these data receive the broad scientific acceptance that we anticipate they ultimately will, a substantial subset of the 100 million current and former adult U.S. smokers would be candidates for screening. To ensure accuracy of these screenings, carefully-monitored centers should be established in every state to provide state-of-the-art diagnostic and treatment services.

The cost of these screenings annually is less expensive than an annual pack-a-day smoking addiction. Moreover, screening costs may decrease as screenings become more widely-used.

A new program for Lung Cancer Awareness Month which begins in November from the American Legacy Foundation® and National Association of Broadcasters, Code Blue for Lung Cancer, calls for early diagnosis of lung cancer, helping smokers quit and a search for a cure. Henschke is a physician-researcher who appears in the Code Blue program.

The American Legacy Foundation is working to raise awareness with the American public that no one deserves to have lung cancer. We are hopeful that the stories told in Code Blue and research such as Dr. Henschke's will help all of us better understand America's number-one cancer killer. If we are to beat it, we must learn how to limit our lung cancer risks by preventing youth from starting to smoke and helping smokers quit.

The American Legacy Foundation® is dedicated to building a world where young people reject tobacco and anyone can quit. Located in Washington, D.C., the foundation develops programs that address the health effects of tobacco use through grants, technical assistance and training, youth activism, strategic partnerships, counter-marketing and grassroots marketing campaigns, public relations, and outreach to populations disproportionately affected by the toll of tobacco. The foundation's national programs include truth®, Great Start® and a Priority Populations Initiative. The American Legacy Foundation was created as a result of the November 1998 Master Settlement Agreement (MSA) reached between attorneys general from 46 states, five U.S. territories and the tobacco industry. Visit http://www.americanlegacy.org.

SOURCE American Legacy Foundation

CONTACT: Julie Cartwright of the American Legacy Foundation, +1-202-454-5596,


Copyright © 2006 PR Newswire. All Rights Reserved

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