Lung Cancer Awareness


Part of the mission of Lung Records is to raise awareness for lung cancer and lung cancer research.

I was originally diagnosed with stage 1B lung cancer in February of 2009. I had surgery to remove the upper right lobe of my lung and then went through three months of chemotherapy. The cancer returned in late 2011. It was now Stage IV. Inoperable. I had 55 cycles of chemo over 4 years before I decided to roll the dice and take a “chemo-vacation”. I was exhausted and constantly sick. I wanted to do more with my life than work and recover from chemo.

Let’s talk about lung cancer. I need to be 100% clear about this. If you have lungs, you can get lung cancer. There is a terrible stigma associated with the disease. When you tell people you had lung cancer, people immediately think you smoked. They usually say to me, “Did you smoke?” They think you caused this by your poor decisions or weak constitution or something. You feel terrible if you haven’t smoked, imagine what you might feel like if you have. No one deserves lung cancer. I have never smoked. Not once. I haven’t been around smoke anymore than anyone else growing up in the 70,s 80s, and 90s. I didn’t live near radon and I haven't been exposed to asbestos. Like most people with cancer, I don’t know why I got it. Anyone can get lung cancer.

As you read below, you’ll see that I’m extremely lucky to be alive. And even though I’m in remission, I’ve been told that this will probably kill me one day. My goal is to keep it at bay as long as possible. I’ve been given an opportunity. I wanted to do something with that opportunity that gave me joy; and music gives me so much joy. I want to use this label and music as a platform to raise awareness and help fund the great non-profits that are spreading the word and helping people like me.

Lung Cancer Facts

According to the American Lung Association:

  • Lung cancer is the leading cancer killer in both men and women in the U.S. In 1987, it surpassed breast cancer to become the leading cause of cancer deaths in women.

  • An estimated 154,050 Americans are expected to die from lung cancer in 2018, accounting for approximately 25 percent of all cancer deaths.

  • The number of deaths caused by lung cancer peaked at 159,292 in 2005 and has since decreased by 6.5 percent to 148,945 in 2016.

  • The age-adjusted death rate for lung cancer is higher for men (46.7 per 100,000 persons) than for women (31.9 per 100,000 persons). It is similar for blacks (40.0 per 100,000 persons) and whites (39.2 per 100,000 persons) overall. However, black men have a far higher age-adjusted lung cancer death rate than white men, while black and white women have similar rates.

  • The lung cancer five-year survival rate (18.6 percent) is lower than many other leading cancer sites, such as colorectal (64.5 percent), breast (89.6 percent) and prostate (98.2 percent).

  • The five-year survival rate for lung cancer is 56 percent for cases detected when the disease is still localized (within the lungs). However, only 16 percent of lung cancer cases are diagnosed at an early stage. For distant tumors (spread to other organs) the five-year survival rate is only 5 percent.

  • More than half of people with lung cancer die within one year of being diagnosed.

According to the Lung Cancer Foundation:

  1. Nearly 155,000 lives are lost annually.

  2. 154,050 people in the U.S. will die of lung cancer in 2018.

  3. More than the next 3 deadliest cancers combined (colorectal cancer 50,630, pancreatic cancer 44,330, breast cancer 41,400) – it accounts for 25% of all cancer deaths.

  4. Lung cancer kills 422 people every day.

  5. Every 3.4 minutes, someone in the U.S. dies of lung cancer.

  6. Lung cancer kills almost twice as many women as breast cancer and more than three times as many men as prostate cancer.

  7. Lung cancer is the leading cancer killer among women in the United States, surpassing breast cancer in 1987.

  8. It’s estimated that more than 70,000 American women will die of lung cancer in 2018.

  9. Lung cancer kills 193 women every day – 8 per hour, one death every 7 minutes.

  10. During the past 39 years, the lung cancer death rate has fallen 29% among men while increasing 102% among women. Since the peak death rate for men in 1990, the death rate for men has fallen 41%. Since the peak death rate for women in 2002, the death rate for women has fallen 15%.

Survival Facts

  1. Lung cancer has the lowest 5-year survival rate of the other most common cancers: only 18% (compared to prostate at 99%, breast at 90%, and colorectal 65%).

  2. Half of women (50.1%) diagnosed with lung cancer will survive one year. Only one in five women (22%) will survive five years.

  3. Among women, the lifetime risk of dying from lung cancer is 82% greater than the risk of dying from the next most likely cancer, breast.

  4. The risk of developing lung cancer in a woman’s lifetime is approximately 1 in 17 (6.04 %)

  5. Lung cancer diagnosed and treated at an early stage has a much higher survival rate, but most cases are not diagnosed until later stages.

  6. Only 18% of lung cancer cases among women are diagnosed early (localized/stage 1)

  7. If lung cancer is caught before it spreads, the likelihood of surviving 5 years or more improves to 55%.

  8. Early detection, by low-dose CT screening, can decrease lung cancer mortality by 14%-20% among high-risk populations

Because of the stigma, lung cancer research is severely underfunded. Although lung cancer is the number one cause of cancer deaths, it is the least funded of all cancers per death. It’s no coincidence that fewer people are smoking but there are still more lung cancer diagnosis; it is not a smoker’s disease, it is everyone’s.

Great lung cancer organizations that need your support: