Lifting the smoke over the stigma of lung cancer

Posted: 12/3/2013

From Chicago Tribune:

November is Lung Cancer Awareness Month, but you'd never know it. Consumers aren't bombarded by products in blue, the color designated by some to raise the profile of the disease. Not a single building in the city's majestic skyline is illuminated in blue. No NFL players or coaches are wearing blue-ribboned apparel, despite donning pink just a month earlier for breast cancer.

"It just doesn't seem fair," said Meghan O'Brien, 31, a nonsmoker diagnosed with stage 4 of the disease last year. There is no stage 5.

The lack of buzz is especially perplexing because lung cancer is the leading cause of cancer death in the United States, claiming more lives than breast, prostate, colon and pancreatic cancers combined. The five-year survival rate is just 16 percent - a statistic that has barely budged since 1975, according to the American Cancer Society. Read more.