37% of patients with lung cancer in Mexico fell ill due to the inhalation of wood smoke, mainly in rural areas with low resources, said today the doctor Isabela Rivas.
“It has been shown that 37% of lung cancer cases are caused by wood smoke, they are in rural areas where they do not have the necessary elements to cook with gas and where they continue to cook with firewood,” said the specialist.
Rivas participated in the academic forum “The impact of lung cancer in Mexico”, which takes place in Puerto Vallarta, a city in the western state of Jalisco.
The expert emphasized that the prevalence of the disease due to this cause is similar in men than in women, although when there is a mutation of cancer, it affects the feminine sector more and in increasingly younger stages, that is, around 40 years of age.
In this sector of the population, the diagnosis of the disease occurs at very advanced stages, because the geographical areas where they live have no access to health services, but also because the symptoms are “not very specific”.
“The majority of patients are being diagnosed in 70% or 80% in advanced stages, in addition to wood smoke is associated with adenocarcinoma (cancerous tumor) in 40% of cases,” he said.
He added that many of these patients have smoking as a risk factor, either as an active smoker or as a passive smoker.
85% of patients with lung cancer were tobacco users, while 12% became ill due to occupational factors, especially with jobs related to the extractive industry, he said.
The symptoms of the disease, such as persistent cough, coughing up blood, shortness of breath, fatigue and weight loss; They are usually confused with other respiratory diseases so their diagnosis can be delayed.
The doctor Angel Lopez Galindo said that this condition is one of the most lethal because of the 1.8 million new cases diagnosed each year in the world, 1.5 million deaths are recorded, ie only 300,000 patients survive.
During his lecture, the specialist member of the American Society of Clinical Oncology indicated that between 70% and 85% of cases are diagnosed in advanced stages, so doctors can not offer a chance of healing to patients, but yes contribute to “live longer and better”.
The forum, organized by the company Roche, seeks to discuss the causes of this disease and to publicize innovations in treatments to increase the level of survival.