Twenty-four patients less than 40 years of age were diagnosed at Walter Reed Army Medical Center between 1971 and 1976 as having lung cancer. The youngest patient was 19 years old. Only one was a nonsmoker. Most patients were symptomatic at the time of examination. The chest roentgenogram showed an infiltrate or consolidation in 9, a mass lesion in 13, and a pleural effusion in 1. Thirty-eight percent had adenocarcinoma, 21% had squamous cell carcinoma, and 21% large cell carcinoma. Nineteen patients had stage II or III disease at the time of initial examination, and only six had resectable tumors. Survival rates were poor.
(JAMA 238:35-36, 1977)