Lung Cancer at a Glance Infographic

This information has been reviewed and approved by Laurie L. Carr, MD (November 2021).

Want to use this on your website? Fill out the content usage request form and then copy this code:


Summary: Lung Cancer at a Glance

Lung Cancer Facts
#1 Cause of Cancer Deaths in U.S.

Risk Factors for Lung Cancer

  • Smoking cigarettes
  • Prior radiation in the chest area
  • Other lung diseases
  • Genetics in a first degree relative
  • Environmental tobacco exposure
  • Asbestos, a toxic chemical
  • Radon, a radioactive gas found in soil

218,520 estimated new lung cancer cases in the U.S. in 2018
142,080 estimated lunch cancer deaths in the U.S. in 2018

Women smokers are 13x more likely to develop lung cancer compared to never-smokers.
Men smokers are 23x more likely to develop lung cancer compared to never-smokers.
Even if you are a never-smoker, you may still develop lung cancer.
Smoking contributes to lung cancer in 80% of women & 90% of men

Secondhand Smoke

  • 7,330 lung cancer deaths each year among never-smokers
  • 20-30% greater chance of developing lung cancer from secondhand smoke as compared to someone with no secondhand smoke

Who Needs an Annual Lung Cancer Screening?

Adults aged 50 to 80 years old with a 20 pack-year smoking history and who currently smoke or who have quit in the past 15 years.

Source: U.S. Preventive Services Task Force

What Is a Pack Year?

A pack year measures how much a person has smoked over a long period of time.
Multiply the number of packs of cigarettes smoked per day by the number of years smoked.
1 pack per day for 20 years – 20 pack years
2 packs per day for 10 years = 20 pack years


Lung Cancer Symptoms

  • Chronic cough
  • Coughing up blood
  • Chest pain
  • Shortness of breath
  • Hoarseness
  • Wheezing
  • Headache and swelling of face, arms or neck
  • Arm, shoulder or neck pain

These can be similar to other more common problems. Most people with lung cancer have more than one symptom. Consult with your health care provider if you are concerned about your symptoms.


More Information on Lung Cancer


You may use this infographic or our Lung Cancer at a Glance (pdf) with permission by completing our content usage request form.