Im a 24 year old male that has been smoking since I was 14. When I was younger I didn't smoke that much because I wasn't old enough to buy them, and I didn't have any money, so I didn't smoke a pack a day. Since I've been 18 I've been a pack a day smoker, and more for the past 2 years because of stress, so about 1 1/2 pack a day for the past 2 years. For a few years, ive been having a mild cough with flem, and more lately I cough several times a day, and it has flem with it most of the time, I just had a cold about 3 weeks back and the cough has been worse since, and for the past 3 months or so i've had this upper back achey feeling... Not pain really, just a dull ache in my upper back... I feel it may be lung cancer, and I'm really scared...
There are no specific symptoms of lung cancer to distinguish it from other lung diseases. Hence, a thorough investigation which may need some ancillary diagnostic tests may be required. The investigation may look at infectious diseases first (as these cases can cause deterioration faster than cancer – but when properly treated can produce equally dramatic responses).
Your best course of action is to make steps towards quitting smoking. The decision is important, and your doctor may be able to help you find the most acceptable strategy to achieve this.
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