ANCHOR LEAD: ABOUT 10% OF LUNG CANCERS OCCUR IN PEOPLE WHO HAVE NEVER SMOKED, ELIZABETH TRACEY REPORTS
Lung cancer only happens in smokers, right? Wrong. About 10% of all cases of lung cancer happen in people who have never smoked. Charles Rudin, a cancer expert at Johns Hopkins, says certain factors are known to be involved.
RUDIN: There are a number of exposures we think are relevant for inducing lung cancer in the never smoker. Certainly secondhand smoke is a major cause, and probably the number one avoidable cause, of lung cancer in never smokers. Other important causes are radon exposure and asbestos exposure. I would say that for the majority of these patients we don’t have a handle on what induced their particular cancer. :31
Rudin says lung cancer itself differs in very clinically important ways between never smokers and those who have smoked, with lung cancer in never smokers more susceptible to certain therapies. He says this is important in charting a treatment approach. At Johns Hopkins, I’m Elizabeth Tracey.