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With a disease as serious as lung cancer, you would expect symptoms to match the severity. You would expect a clear or obvious warning light – gasping for breath, a violent and unshakable cough, intense chest pains.

Because how could something so acute not send out an adequate alert?

However, the reality is early symptoms of lung cancer are often subtle and easy to dismiss as something else. A bit of breathlessness is because you’re a bit out of shape. Lack of energy can be down to anything from poor diet to low mood. And a persistent cough? Well, we all know what springs to mind now when we hear a cough.

In our latest awareness campaign, we aim to help people, including GPs, spot potential lung cancer symptoms early and encourage them to take the necessary steps to be diagnosed as soon as possible.

Spot the SYMPTOMS

It is so important to be able to recognise the many different symptoms of lung cancer. From the more obvious symptoms such as a persistent cough, breathlessness, chest pain and chest infections, wheezing, hoarseness and coughing up blood to vague symptoms like weight loss and fatigue as well as the more obscure symptoms such as back or shoulder pain, swelling in the face or neck and even clubbing of the fingers.

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Spot the SYMPTOMS

Spot what’s different for you

Michelle Spotted the Difference

I’ve always had really good health and then I got really bad back ache. I just couldn’t think of any reason why I’d have it. Now I know everyone gets backache at some point in their lives but something told me not to ignore it.

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Andrew Spotted the Difference

I was working as a music teacher and noticed my voice was going a bit croaky and weak when I was teaching lessons. I’m also in a band and I couldn’t sing anymore so I went to get it checked out…

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They took out my whole lower right lobe through video assisted surgery. They just took the cancer out. They could do that because I went to the doctor, and it was caught early

Michelle, diagnosed 2018

Helping GPs to spot the difference

We know of many patients who have gone to their GP with symptoms and faced delays to their diagnosis. So, as part of the Spot the Difference campaign, we have created a number of tools and resources for primary care to help identify potential lung cancer cases as soon as possible.

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Helping GPs to spot the difference

I didn’t want to go to the doctors. I was scared to go because I was aware that all this smoking I had done previously wasn’t good for me. But at the same time, I knew I had to go. I couldn’t delay any longer and just get it out of the way, one way or another.

Bill, over 20 years lung cancer free

Support the campaign

We are only able to run awareness campaigns like Spot the Difference because of your support. Lung cancer is still struggling to recover from the pandemic, so we need to do everything we can to make sure these life saving messages are pushed far and wide. Please help us any way you can.

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Support the campaign

Ruthra spotted the difference

Ruthra initially put her recurrent chest infections down to her little boys bringing bugs home from nursery. But when she coughed up blood, she knew something wasn’t right so she went back to her GP and asked to see a respiratory specialist.

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Joe spotted the difference

A cough wasn’t unusual for Joe; as a child and young adult he had suffered with them. But this one felt different. It wasn’t shifting and it left him very tired so he went back to his doctor for a second opinion.

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