Lung Cancer Test Your Knowledge

Your score on this self–test is not as important as the fact that it could help solidify your knowledge of lung cancer and maybe even teach you something you didn't know.

1) Lung cancer is the leading cause of death in the United States and worldwide.

Correct Answer: True. The presence of lung cancer has soared since the mass production of cigarettes. According to the American Cancer Society, almost 60 percent of all people diagnosed with lung cancer will die within one year of the diagnosis. Approximately 75 percent of the diagnosed patients will die within two years.

2) Pack years is an estimate of:

A)      The age when a person started smoking
B)      The number of cigarettes smoked per year
C)      The number of cigarettes smoked over a long period of time
D)      The number of years until a lung cancer diagnosis

Correct Answer: C. Cigarette smoking is the major cause of lung cancer. "Pack years" are used to determine the likelihood of developing lung cancer. A pack year is calculated by multiplying the number of cigarettes smoked per day by the number of years smoked. A person who smokes two packs a day for 10 years is said to have 200 pack years.

3) Common symptoms of advanced lung cancer are:

A)      Breathing problems
B)      Persistent cough
C)      Blood in the sputum
D)      All of the above

Correct Answer: D. Most lung cancers do not have symptoms until the cancer is in a more advanced stage. Other symptoms that may indicate lung cancer include fatigue, weight loss and recurrent lung infections.

4) The two main types of lung cancer are:

A)      Squamous cell and venous cell
B)      Small cell and non–small cell lung cancer
C)      Old cell and new cell cancer
D)      Normal and abnormal cancer 

Correct Answer: B. Small cell lung cancer and non–small cell lung cancer are the two basic types of lung cancer. Non–small cell cancer is the most common form and accounts for about 87 percent of lung cancer cases. It is generally less aggressive than small cell lung cancer and responds better to treatment.

5) The symptoms of lung cancer usually are very noticeable.

A)      True
B)      False

Correct Answer: F. Lung cancer often has no symptoms, especially in early stages. When symptoms do appear they may include chronic, raspy coughing; recurring respiratory infections; wheezing; hoarseness; swelling of the neck and face; pain in a shoulder, arm, or hand; fatigue; weakness; weight loss; or severe headaches.

6) A bronchoscopy is a procedure that:

A)      Uses a bronchoscope
B)      Allows physicians to see inside the breathing passages
C)      Collects lung cells for a biopsy
D)      All of the above

Correct Answer: D. A bronchoscopy uses a thin, lighted tube called a bronchoscope. The bronchoscope is passed through the nose or mouth into the trachea (wind pipe) to view the breathing passages. A sample of tissue can be removed for biopsy if necessary.

7) Smoking is estimated to be responsible for what percentage of lung cancer cases?

A)      87 percent
B)      65 percent
C)      25 percent
D)      75 percent

Correct Answer: A. Today, smoking is responsible for about 87 percent of lung cancer cases, according to the American Cancer Society. In areas of the world where more people smoke, there has been a corresponding rise in lung cancer cases. Smoking is the leading cause of lung cancer.

8) Caucasians are two to four times more likely than African–Americans to get lung cancer.

A)      True
B)      False

Correct Answer: B. African–Americans are two to four times more likely to get lung cancer than whites. They also are more likely to develop lung cancer at an earlier age. However, this increased risk is more likely due to smoking and reduced access to health care than race.

9) The primary treatment for lung cancer is:

A)      Surgery
B)      Radiation 
C)      Chemotherapy
D)      None of the above

Correct Answer: A. Surgery is the first course of treatment for lung cancer. The goal is to remove as much cancer as possible without damaging surrounding healthy tissues. Radiation therapy and chemotherapy may be used before and/or after surgery as well.

10) Women who smoke equal amounts as men have a greater risk of lung cancer.

A)      True
B)      False

Correct Answer: True. Men are more likely to smoke but scientists have discovered that women who smoke an equal amount have a great chance of developing lung cancer. This difference may be due to female hormones, the tendency for women to inhale or the decreased likelihood for women to quit smoking.