Nationwide campaign boost lung cancer diagnoses

19 July 2012

A nationwide campaign to boost awareness of the symptoms of lung cancer has led to an increase in the number of people being diagnosed.

The 'Cough Cough' initiative was developed by NHS Cumbria in an attempt to quell lung cancer death rates in the county, but it was rolled out across the UK in a bid to help curb nationwide mortality, as well as local death rates.

The campaign highlights the main symptoms of lung cancer, including persistent coughing that lasts for several weeks, unexplained weight loss, shortness of breath, chest pain and blood in phlegm.

In boosting awareness of these tell-tale signs, it was hoped that more people would seek consultation earlier, and so far this has proven successful, with a 61 per cent increase in diagnoses, compared with last year.

Dr Rebecca Wagstaff, NHS Cumbria's deputy director of public health, said it is good news that there has been an increase in patients being referred for tests, and also getting an early diagnosis – which substantially increases a person's chances of recovery.

"However we must not become complacent. It's so important that people know the symptoms so they can spot it early and go to the doctor or encourage others to go along," she added.

Posted by Philip Briggs

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