For smokers, lung cancer is an ever-present fear. In 2013, about 160,000 people in the United States will die from lung cancer. Smoking is the #1 risk factor for lung cancer, and quitting smoking is the best way to lower the risk. Smoking is also a risk factor for other cancers and health problems, including heart and lung disease. We now have a secondary prevention strategy, annual screening with low-dose computed tomography (LDCT scans) that has the potential to greatly reduce lung cancer deaths.
The big “C” – cancer — can cause panic and feelings of helplessness. These feelings, however, often are shared beyond the patients being screened or treated for the disease. Employers often are unsure of how to help their employees who have been diagnosed with cancer and desire to remain at work during treatment or return to work after care.