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[ISDH]November is Lung Cancer Awareness Month
Start Date: 11/2/2012Start Time: 12:00 AM
End Date: 11/2/2012End Time: 11:59 PM
Entry Description

INDIANAPOLIS—Lung cancer is the leading cause of cancer deaths in Indiana, killing approximately 4,000 Hoosiers each year. However, lung cancer burden can be reduced by up to 90 percent through a decreased use of tobacco, according to The Health Consequences of Smoking: A Report of the Surgeon General (2004). To help raise awareness of this deadly disease and how it can be prevented, November is recognized as Lung Cancer Awareness Month. 


According to Indiana Facts and Figures 2012, more than 5,200 new cases of lung cancer are diagnosed each year. Smoking is the greatest risk factor for the disease, accounting for nearly 87 percent of all lung cancer deaths. Approximately 25 percent of Hoosiers smoke cigarettes.


“In Indiana, we have much room for improvement where smoking and tobacco use are concerned,” said State Health Commissioner Gregory N. Larkin, M.D.  “It’s well known that individuals who quit smoking significantly reduce their risk of developing cancer and many other chronic diseases and conditions. It’s time for Hoosiers who use tobacco to take that first step and make a positive change for themselves and their families.” 


The effects of quitting smoking begin immediately. Within 20 minutes, blood pressure and pulse return to normal levels. Within 72 hours, the chance of a heart attack drops and sense of smell and taste begin to return. In three months, lung capacity increases and in one year, risk of heart attack is cut in half. Within five years, heart disease rate drops to that of a non-smoker.


“We have an excellent free resource for smokers in Indiana who want to quit,” said Dr. Larkin. “The Indiana Tobacco Quitline provides one-on-one support with a trained Quit Coach and nicotine replacement therapy, like the nicotine patch or gum, when appropriate. Anyone who wants to quit should call 1-800-QUIT-NOW (1-800-784-8669) and give it a chance.”


Earlier this year, Indiana enacted the first statewide smoke free air law. The law covers nearly all public places in the state, including restaurants and other workplaces. Eighteen communities statewide and the Indianapolis International Airport have passed even stronger smoke free air ordinances. Visit for more information on Indiana’s state and local smoke free air policies.


As part of Lung Cancer Awareness Month, the American Cancer Society will celebrate the 37th Great American Smokeout on Nov. 15. Local community events will be held by tobacco control coalitions that day at worksites, schools, hospitals and community businesses. For more information on local events, or to contact local tobacco control coalitions, visit


To learn more about lung cancer risks in Indiana, check out Indiana Cancer Facts and Figures 2012 (, a comprehensive report on the burden of cancer in Indiana. 



Contact Information:
Name: Ken Severson
Phone: 317.233.7104
Entry Type:
Press Release
Entry Category:
  • Announcements
  • Category:
  • Family & Health
  • Agency Name
    Health, Indiana State Department of

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