PINEHURST – According to the American Cancer Society, the overall chance that a man will develop lung cancer in his lifetime is about 1 in 13 and the risk for a woman is about 1 in 16. These numbers include both smokers and non-smokers, although the risk is much higher for smokers.
By far the leading cause of cancer death in both men and women, lung cancer claims more lives each year than colon, breast and prostate cancers combined.
On Monday, Nov. 25, FirstHealth of the Carolinas will join more than 90 communities across the country in hosting the Fifth Annual Shine a Light on Lung Cancer Vigil in partnership with the national Lung Cancer Alliance. The local program will be held from 5:30 to 6:30 p.m. in the Shadowlawn Room at the Clara McLean House at FirstHealth (20 FirstVillage Drive across Memorial Drive from the main entrance to FirstHealth Moore Regional Hospital).
The speaker will be Michael Pritchett, D.O., a pulmonologist with FirstHealth’s Chest Center of the Carolinas and Pinehurst Medical Clinic. The evening will also include a lighting ceremony recognizing the lives that are touched by lung cancer. Weather permitting, this part of the program will be held in the Clara’s House Healing Garden.
In addition, several pieces of artwork from the Lilly Oncology “Oncology on Canvas” exhibit will be displayed during the evening and refreshments will be served.
An event that started in 2005 in Boston and California, the Shine a Light on Lung Cancer Vigil has since spread nationwide. As the only national nonprofit organization dedicated solely to providing support and advocacy for people living with or at risk for lung cancer, Lung Cancer Alliance works with community partners to create events that help raise awareness, advance early detection and research, support patients and their loved ones, and work toward building governmental support.
Recent studies have indicated that screening individuals at risk for lung cancer with low-dose CT scans can save tens of thousands of lives a year, and a government panel recently recommended lung cancer screenings for populations considered at high risk. FirstHealth of the Carolinas currently offers the scans.
For more information on the Shine a Light on Lung Cancer Vigil, call (800) 213-3284. For information on scheduling a low-dose CT scan for lung cancer screening, call the Chest Center of the Carolinas at (855) 715-2258.