Lung cancer also known as Lung Carcinoma is the uncontrolled growth of abnormal cells that start off in one or both lungs; usually in the cells that line the air passages. The abnormal cells do not develop into healthy lung tissues, they divide rapidly and form tumors. About 1,370,000 deaths had been recorded worldwide due to rapid spread or growth of lung cancer or lung carcinoma.
TYPES OF LUNG CANCER
There are two main types of lung cancer:
Small cell lung cancer (SCLC) and Non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC).
SMALL CELL LUNG CANCER (SCLC): also known as “oat-cell carcinoma” is a type of highly malignant cancer that most commonly arises within the lung, although it can occasionally arise in other body sites, such as the cervix, prostrate and gastrointestinal tract. Compared to non-small cell carcinoma, small cell carcinoma has a shorter doubling time, higher growth fraction, highly responsive to chemotherapy and earlier development of metastases. Unlike the non-small cell lung cancer, it does not have any other subdivision.
NON-SMALL CELL LUNG CANCER (NSCLC): A group of lung cancers that are named for the kinds of cells found in the cancer and how the cells look under a microscope. The three main types of non-small cell lung cancer are:
- Squamous cell carcinoma,
- Large cell carcinoma, and
SIGNS AND SYMPTOMS OF LUNG CANCER
- A cough that does not go away or gets worse
- Coughing up blood or rust-colored sputum (spit or phlegm)
- Chest pain that is often worse with deep breathing, coughing, or laughing
- Weight loss and loss of appetite
- Shortness of breath
- Feeling tired or weak
- Infections such as bronchitis and pneumonia that don’t go away or keep coming back
- Excess growth or thickening of certain bones
- Blood clots
- Excess breast growth in men (gynecomastia)
- Nervous system problems
- High blood calcium levels (hypercalcemia)
TESTS AND TREATMENTS
These are some examples of tests to find out if a person truly has lung cancer.
- Chest X-ray.
- Sputum cytology
- Endobronchial Ultrasound(EBUS)
- Fine needle aspiration (FNA)
- Imaging test, which may include:
CT or CAT (computed axial tomography).
MRI (magnetic resonance imaging) scans.
PET (Positron emission tomography) scans.
The following are treatments for lung cancer.