Preventing Non-Small Cell Lung Cancer

Experts at NYU Langone’s Perlmutter Cancer Center recommend several lifestyle changes to reduce your risk of developing non-small cell lung cancer, the most common type of lung cancer. These include limiting your exposure to smoke and other cancer-causing chemicals.

VIDEO: Information about NYU Langone’s tobacco cessation program.

Avoid Smoking and Secondhand Smoke

Smoking cigarettes is the leading cause of non-small cell lung cancer. Cigar and pipe smoking also increase the risk. Doctors at NYU Langone urge people who smoke to quit. Even if you have smoked for a long time, there are still benefits to quitting. Doing so can reverse damage to the lungs before a tumor develops. You can find support for quitting at Perlmutter Cancer Center’s Tobacco Cessation Program.

Tobacco Cessation Program

Smoking is a leading cause of lung cancer. We can help you quit.

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Even if you don’t smoke, regular exposure to smoke from other people’s cigarettes, cigars, or pipes raises your risk of non-small cell lung cancer.

Limit Exposure to Cancer-Causing Chemicals

Regular exposure to certain chemicals, which are inhaled through the air, increases the risk of developing non-small cell lung cancer.

Radon is an odorless radioactive gas that’s released into the air when uranium, which is found in soil and rocks, breaks down. Some homes built on soil containing uranium may have elevated levels of radon.

Asbestos is a mineral fiber that has been used in building materials for insulation and as a fire retardant. Although the use of materials containing asbestos has decreased, people can still be exposed to the fibers during home renovations or commercial building projects.

If you are concerned about radon and asbestos in your home, you can test for these chemicals and have them safely removed.

Regular exposure to other chemicals, such as coal tar, soot, or gasoline, may also increase the risk of developing non-small cell lung cancer. If these exposures occur in the workplace, government regulations are in place to help protect you.