Exposure to Radon Causes Lung Cancer In Non-smokers and Smokers Alike

The Facts...

Lung cancer kills thousands of Americans every year.�Smoking, radon, and secondhand smoke are the leading causes of lung cancer.� Although lung cancer can be treated, the survival rate is one of the lowest for those with cancer.� From the time of diagnosis, between 11 and 15 percent of those afflicted will live beyond five years, depending upon demographic factors.� In many cases lung cancer can be prevented.

Smoking is the leading cause of lung cancer.� Smoking causes an estimated 160,000* cancer deaths in the U.S. every year (American Cancer Society, 2004).� And the rate among women is rising.� On January 11, 1964, Dr. Luther L. Terry, then U.S. Surgeon General, issued the first warning on the link between smoking and lung cancer.� Lung cancer now surpasses breast cancer as the number one cause of death among women.� A smoker who is also exposed to radon has a much higher risk of lung cancer.

Radon is the number one cause of lung cancer among non-smokers, according to EPA estimates.� Overall, radon is the second leading cause of lung cancer.� Radon is responsible for about 21,000 lung cancer deaths every year.� About 2,900 of these deaths occur among people who have never smoked.� On January 13, 2005, Dr. Richard H. Carmona, the U.S. Surgeon General, issued a national health advisory on radon.� Read a study by Dr. William Field on radon-related lung cancer in women at www.cheec.uiowa.edu/misc/radon.html

Secondhand smoke is the third leading cause of lung cancer and responsible for an estimated 3,000 lung cancer deaths every year.� Smoking affects non-smokers by exposing them to secondhand smoke.� Exposure to secondhand smoke can have serious consequences for children�s health, including asthma attacks, affecting the respiratory tract (bronchitis, pneumonia), and may cause ear infections.

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EPA | United States Environmental Protection AgencyExposure to Radon Causes Lung Cancer In Non-smokers and Smokers Alike