Have you had a cough for more than 3 weeks? Then it is time to tell your doctor

Thursday February 19, 2015

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It is probably nothing serious, but there is a chance that it could be a sign of lung cancer.

Most people do not have lung cancer. But it is best to be safe and see your general practice team.

If you have got lung cancer, finding out quickly means it is easier to treat and can save your life.

​Lung cancer in New Zealand

Lung cancer is the biggest single cause of cancer death in New Zealand. Most people get lung cancer because they smoke, but some people just get it anyway.

While we all know that giving up smoking is the most important thing we can do to reduce deaths from this disease – the next most important thing is to catch the cancer early when it is still treatable.

To find out about the free support available in Canterbury to help you stop smoking visit www.smokefreecanterbury.org.nz

Main Symptoms

People can survive lung cancer if it is caught early. ​Symptoms include:

  • a persistent, worsening cough
  • coughing up excessive phlegm with blood
  • chest pain with coughing or breathing
  • recurring chest infections.

If you have got lung cancer, finding out quickly means it is easier to treat and can save your life.

About the cough cough cough campaign

The Canterbury District Health Board, Southern Cancer Network and Te Waipounamu Māori Leadership Group for Cancer have launched a campaign to raise awareness of lung cancer and the risk factors that impact on Māori, whānau, hapū, and iwi wellbeing.

It's an important issue as Māori get cancer more often than non-Māori and have a higher chance of dying​ from cancer once it's been diagnosed. ​

Page last reviewed: 19 February 2015
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