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November Is National Lung Cancer Awareness Month

STUDIO CITY (CBS) — November is National Lung Cancer Awareness Month.

Kim Norris, a lung cancer widow and President of the Lung Cancer Foundation of America, and Dr. Michael Weitz, a stage IV lung cancer survivor visited the KCAL 9 studios Thursday.

Lung cancer is the number one cancer killer for men and women in the USA – it kills more people than breast, prostate, colon, liver, kidney and melanoma cancers - COMBINED. Despite this, people resist discussing or reporting on this disease, and it remains the most under-researched and under-funded cancer, in spite of its tremendous impact on public health.

One of the major reasons why people don't like to discuss lung cancer is because of the stigma surrounding this disease. Lung cancer is the "black sheep" of cancers, and the only cancer where the victims are stigmatized and blamed for their disease. This is true despite the fact that an estimated 60% of new lung cancer diagnoses will be in non-smokers - a combination of former smokers, some who quit ten or twenty years ago, and people who have never smoked. (About 20% of women diagnosed with lung cancer never smoked). These former smokers did the right thing … they quit. Little do they know that they are still at risk for lung cancer and just like lung cancer victims who have never smoked, they will be shocked to discover how few treatment options are available to them. Although lung cancer is the nation's leading cause of cancer deaths, it remains the most under-funded, under-researched and under-supported cancer.

For more information on lung cancer, click here.

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