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Most people do not have obvious signs in the early stages of lung cancer but symptoms that may eventually develop can include:

  • a persistent cough
  • coughing up blood
  • persistent breathlessness or chest infection
  • unexplained tiredness and weight loss
  • an ache or pain when breathing or coughing

If you have these symptoms, you should see your GP in the first instance. Patients with suspected lung cancer are referred to the Manchester Thoracic Oncology Centre in the North West Lung Centre at MFT for assessment and help in managing their conditions.

Our lung cancer team is multidisciplinary, including five dedicated lung cancer and pleural physicians, five thoracic radiologists, five thoracic pathologists, five thoracic surgeons and three medical oncologists and visiting clinical oncologists from The Christie Hospital. The Clinical Lead for Lung Cancer is Dr Richard Booton and the Research Lead is Dr Phil Crosbie.

The team has a nurse bronchoscopist – the first in the UK – and is supported by four lung cancer nurse specialists. Our surgeons perform nearly 500 lung cancer operations annually including minimally invasive and lung sparing surgery.

Early identification of lung cancer is vital and our team is leading a pilot ‘Lung Health Check’ for the City of Manchester that includes a low dose CT scan for those at risk of lung cancer.

Tests and treatment

For patients with suspected lung cancer, the chest clinic offers pre-clinic CT scanning and rapid access to a spectrum of investigations, resulting in rapid evaluation, diagnosis, staging and treatment. We pioneered the use of endoscopic techniques to detect early signs of cancer such as autofluorescence bronchosopy, where laser light is used to detect pre-cancerous tissue. We have also developed a number of minimally invasive treatment techniques using a bronchoscope.

Lucis Bronchoscopy Centre

Our £1 million state-of-the-art bronchoscopy unit offers high-tech equipment to diagnose and treat many conditions of the airways, lungs and pleura (lung lining). It houses three fully-equipped procedure rooms, and is believed to be the largest centre of its kind in the country.

We perform a variety of procedures to fully assess patients’ symptoms. These include various forms of bronchoscopy including Endobronchial Ultrasound (EBUS), radiologically guided biopsy with CT or ultrasound and occasionally surgery to biopsy suspect areas. One or more procedure is commonly required.

In addition, the team may recommend a number of investigations to assess your fitness for treatment, including tests of lung function, heart function and exercise capacity.

The team expects to provide definitive answers within 7 days, a challenging and innovative service improvement delivered by the ‘Rapid Access to Pulmonary Investigation Days’ (RAPID) Programme. The team will discuss investigation results at one of 2 weekly multidisciplinary case conferences and make recommendations for management & treatment.

Cecilia Centre

The Cecilia Centre is a day case unit specifically for lung cancer patients undergoing chemotherapy. The million-pound centre, opened by the Duchess of Westminster, was developed in conjunction with Macmillan following an anonymous donation by a single donor. For further information, please call: 0161 291 4848 / 0161 291 4843.


The Centre runs a wide ranging research programme across all disciplines and managed through the Thoracic Oncology Research Hub (TORCH). It encompasses trials in both diagnostic and treatment arenas and across the stages of disease, from precancerous to advanced stage disease.

Our strengths include early disease/screening, thoracic surgery and tissue banking, adjuvant therapy and mesothelioma. We are part of Cancer Research UK’s Lung Cancer Centre of Excellence.

It is likely that you will be asked to consider participating in a research trial in addition to your required investigations.

You can learn about our leading research work, how this benefits patients, and how you can get involved, by visiting our research facility pages.


For Lung Cancer Referrals: 
Tel: 0161 291 2116
Fax: 0161 291 5943

For information about Bronchoscopy Procedures:
Tel: 0161 291 4098
Fax: 0161 291 4091


The Lung Cancer service is located in the North West Lung Centre.