How Does Radon Induce Lung Cancer?

When radon gas is inhaled into the lungs, radon decay products become lodged or trapped in the lungs lining, where alpha particles radiate and penetrate the cells of the mucous membranes, bronchi, and other pulmonary tissues. It is believed that it is the ionizing radiation from these alpha particles that affect the bronchial epithelial cells and initiates the process of the carcinogenesis.

Radon related lung cancers are mainly seen in the upper airways, however radon increases the incidences of all histological types of lung cancer, including small cell carcinoma, adenocarcinoma and squamous cell carcinoma.