Lung cancer is the most common type of cancer in the world. It usually doesn't create symptoms until it enlarges in the lung or spreads to other parts of the body. Smoking is the most significant risk factor, however, it can also affect non-smokers.
Common symptoms of lung cancer
- Shortness of breath
- Coughing up blood
- Respiratory infection
- Weight loss
- Pain in chest, shoulder, or back.
The most prevalent causes of lung cancer
- Inhaling toxins from industrial chemicals,
- Air pollution
- Radon exposure (a colorless and odorless gas produced by the natural decay of uranium in the soil)
Lung cancer is categorized into two categories based on microscopic examination: SCLC (small cell lung cancer) and NSCLC (non-small cell lung cancer). Some other important terms related to lung cancer are:-
- Adenocarcinoma:- It begins on the lungs' periphery (lesions located within the 3cm surface, in the outer third part of the lung) and is frequently linked to cancer mutations.
- Large cell carcinoma:- Is an aggressive form of cancer that is often discovered too late when it has already caused shortness of breath and exhaustion.
- SCC (Squamous Cell Carcinoma):- It is frequently identified at an earlier stage than other types of lung cancer since it is caused by smoking. Squamous cell lung cancers are most commonly found in the center of the lung or one of the main airways.
Treatment of lung cancer depends on its type and stage and it includes chemotherapy, surgery, immunotherapy, and radiation therapy. When the patient is diagnosed, a healthcare professional finds out whether it is a benign tumor (cells are not cancerous and they won’t spread to other parts of the body) or a malignant tumor (cancerous cells can easily spread via bloodstream or lymphatic system). Lung cancer has a better prognosis when detected early, however, each form of lung cancer has its own expected prognosis.