Lung Cancer is the fifth most common cancer in Australia, with approximately 12,000 Australians diagnosed each year.
If lung cancer is found at an earlier stage, there is more chance of a better outcome. It’s important to know the symptoms of lung cancer as although lung cancer occurs mostly in people aged 60 and over, it can affect people of any age. Anyone can get lung cancer, even if they have never smoked.
What are the symptoms?
- Coughing up blood
- New cough that doesn’t go away
- Chest pain and/or shoulder pain or discomfort – the pain may be worse with coughing or deep breathing
- Trouble breathing or shortness of breath
- Hoarse voice
- Weight loss / loss of appetite
- Chest infection that doesn’t go away
- Tiredness or weakness
If you have any of these symptoms and they are persistent, talk to your doctor. It’s important to understand that many conditions can cause these symptoms, not just lung cancer.
Lung Cancer develops from abnormal cells that grow and multiply in a fast and uncontrollable way in one or both lungs. Cancer that starts in the lungs is called the primary cancer but can often spread to other organs and parts of the body such as brain, lymph nodes, liver, and bones. There are two main types of primary lung cancer, and they are classified according to the type of cells that are affected.
At RTMC we manage chronic conditions such as lung cancer with a team based approach. Many chronic conditions can be managed to minimise the severity of the symptoms. This is where GP Management Plans and Team Care Arrangements come into effect for eligible patients.
Your GP may assist with the following in management of lung cancer:
- Preventive care
- Health Checks/Screening
- Initial investigations
- Referrals to specialists
- Assisting with treatment decisions
- Ongoing monitoring / follow up
- Family support
- Palliative care