The earlier lung cancer is found, the easier it is to treat, and the more likely you are to survive. If you've had a cough for 3 weeks or more, see your GP.

What to look out for

Lung cancer is the most common cancer in Scotland with around 5,000 new cases diagnosed every year. But there's some good news. More people than ever in Scotland are surviving the disease, 250 more a year compared to 25 years ago.

Your risk of lung cancer increases with age but finding it early makes it easier to treat and improves your chance of survival.

Why earlier

If lung cancer is diagnosed early enough, there's a better chance of successful treatment.

With new innovative techniques combined with the latest best practice in radiotherapy and chemotherapy, survival rates are improving and helping to slow the progress of the disease.

More about treating lung cancer

Signs and symptoms

If you've had a cough for 3 weeks, it's worth getting it checked out with your GP. Chances are it's nothing to worry about but it could be a sign of lung cancer.

You should see your GP as soon as possible if you:

  • have a cough that's lasted for 3 weeks or more
  • have a cough you've had for a long time that's got worse or changed
  • have been coughing up blood
  • have a chest infection that doesn't clear up
  • have unexplained weight loss
  • have pain in your chest or shoulders
  • have unexplained tiredness or lack of energy
  • have a hoarse voice
  • feel breathless for no reason

Having one or more of these doesn’t mean you have lung cancer. However, if you’ve had them for more than 3 weeks you shouldn’t ignore them - just visit your GP to be on the safe side.

More about the signs and symptoms of lung cancer