Women’s Lung Health Program

Every five minutes a woman in the United States is diagnosed with lung cancer and, surprisingly, there’s a strong chance that she is a nonsmoker. That’s because lung cancer in nonsmokers is more common than many people realize. Overall, 10 to 15 percent of lung cancers occur in nonsmokers and two-thirds of the people in this group are women. The percentage is significantly higher in Asian women. People with a family history of lung cancer also may be at risk of developing the disease. In fact, lung cancer in those who have never smoked is now considered the 6th most common cause of cancer deaths in the United States.

Many women are not aware of the risk factors and the importance of screening and early detection. Some of the non-tobacco-related causes of lung cancer include exposure to:

  • Radon gas in the home
  • Previous radiation therapy to the chest to treat other cancers
  • Secondhand smoke
  • Asbestos while on the job or living with someone who has been exposed to asbestos
  • Vaporized oils resulting from stir-fry cooking at high heat
  • Cancer-causing agents in the work place, such as chemicals, pesticides and various products in factories, nail or hair salons and other job sites.

We Can Help

If you are concerned about your risk, we can help. Jupiter Medical Center’s lung health navigator can help evaluate your risk and guide you through the entire process. Women at a higher risk of developing lung cancer can benefit from regular screenings and close monitoring for early detection. If you have a family history of lung cancer, our team of specially trained genetic counselors and physicians work together to provide education, hereditary cancer risk assessment, genetic counseling and testing. They can develop a personalized surveillance plan based on your specific risk factors.