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MALAYSIA: ENDLESS EMOTIONAL EFFECTS FOR LUNG CANCER SURVIVORS

KUALA LUMPUR, Malaysia Sept 25 (NNN-Bernama) For long-term lung cancer survivors after five years, the emotional effects are seen to be more problematic than the physical effects, based on recent survey data.

Licensed clinical social worker and director of Support Initiatives for Lung Cancer Alliance (LCA), Maureen Rigney and her team had led an online survey on the treatment and smoking histories of 820 respondents.

Symptoms like shortness of breath and fatigue are just a few of the physical side effects that can occur during and post treatment, said Rigney.

Emotionally, lung cancer stigma and anxiety do not end when the treatment is over, according to her .

Of the respondents, 471 self-identified as lung cancer survivors and 349 self-identified as caregivers or the loved ones of lung cancer survivors, with 21 per cent of the survivor respondents indicating they are long-term survivors, diagnosed five or more years ago.

In addition to identifying prevalent side effects experienced during treatment, long-term survivors identified the most problematic effects of lung cancer at five or more years post-diagnosis.

The most common late and long-term symptoms include shortness of breath (39 per cent), fatigue (28 per cent), short-term memory (27 per cent) and anxiety (25 per cent).

The long-term survival rate of those who have been diagnosed with lung cancer continues to increase, calling for additional research to fully understand how to best support this patient population.

Patients, survivors and advocates have joined researchers and physicians worldwide to discuss the future of lung cancer at the International Association for the Study of Lung Cancer’s (IASLC) 19th World Conference on Lung Cancer (WCLC) in Toronto, Canada from Sept 23 to 26.

WCLC is the world’s largest meeting dedicated solely to lung cancer and other thoracic malignancies, attracting over 7,000 researchers, physicians and specialists from more than 100 countries.

Source: NAM News Network

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