LCA Sends Letter to Dr. Nancy Snyderman Clarifying Information on Lung Cancer Risk
April 8, 2010
Nancy Snyderman, MD
Chief Medical Editor
Dear Dr. Snyderman,
Thank you for the piece on lung cancer this morning.
Lung Cancer Alliance has been on public record in support of the
approach of Dr. Spira's research.
Your reports have been so helpful in making the public
aware that lung cancer is by far the biggest cancer killer. All of us
at LCA were especially touched by the piece you and Matt Lauer did on
John Atkinson, our wonderful advocate from Nebraska who died at age 41
last year. Even though John never smoked the first question most people
asked him when they heard he had lung cancer was “did you smoke?” The
stigma and indifference stunned him, as it does practically every lung
May I, as a lung cancer survivor, make a request? The
statement that 90% of lung cancer patients are smokers, as you said in
your report today, implies that they are all current smokers, which is
making the increasingly cost-conscious public resent lung cancer
patients even more.
If they knew the facts - that 60% are former smokers and
another 18% never smoked at all - the political obstacles to a more
comprehensive and aggressive research effort would not be so daunting.
Certainly if you would like to discuss this, we welcome
the opportunity to speak with you or to send you any additional
information you may need. Again, we deeply appreciate your coverage of
cc: Laurie Fenton-Ambrose, President and CEO