Lung Cancer Overview
The most number of cancer deaths are due to lung cancer. This Lung cancer is the rapid growth of abnormal cells in the lung.
Important thing about this disease is that it can start anywhere in the lungs and affect any part of the respiratory system.
Both men and women are equally affected by this disease and accounts to be the leading cause of cancer deaths in the United States. (Men at Higher Risk - Lung Cancer Research!)
Lung cancer is more dreadful and devastating than any other cancers like the colon, prostate, lymph and breast cancer thus leading to more deaths than all these cancers combined.
The main cause and the risk factor of lung cancer is smoking. According to the studies most of these lung cancer deaths could be prevented as smoking accounts for nearly 90 percent of the cases.
Although the risk of cancer increases with the length of time and number of cigarettes one smoke’s, Quitting Smoking can, over time, gradually reduce the risk of developing cancer. Protection from exposure to other leading causes of lung cancer, such as asbestos, radon and secondhand smoke, also decreases the risk.
The main drawback of lung cancer is that this disease does not show any early symptoms. Therefore it is fair well good to prevent the disease from happening. This disease is not discovered until it has reached its advanced stage. Thus it leaves behind very few chances of recovery and a poor survival rate.
When symptoms do occur, the most common warning sign is a cough. A shortness of breath that may be mistaken to be a respiratory illness is also one of the common symptoms. In addition to a new cough, the other lung cancer symptoms include blood in cough, hoarseness, difficulty swallowing, swelling in neck and face and others.
The various methods of lung cancer treatment are surgery, radiation therapy, chemotherapy as well as targeted therapy.
Lung cancer is commonly divided into two types the small cell and non-small cell. They differ in the way they grow and spread. They are thus treated differently. The smokers are affected by the first type and the method of treatment is chemotherapy and radiation as surgery is not preferred.
The second type of lung cancer the non-small cell lung cancer is the most common. If caught early when it's confined to a small area, it often can be removed surgically.
This is further categorized into four types. They are squamous cell carcinoma, adenocarcinoma, large cell carcinoma and the bronchoaveolar carcinoma.
Lung Cancer Prognosis and Survival Rate
The common concept behind the survival rate for any cancer affected patients depends on certain factors like the stage of the cancer, type of the cancer, the size of the tumor and the overall health condition of the patient. Depending on these factors the outcome is predicted in other words the prognosis and the survival rate are determined.
With lung cancer the likely outcome will also depend very much on its type. The statistics for small cell lung cancer are different from the statistics for non-small cell lung cancer. As the lung cancer is detected in later stage the chances of recovery are poor.
Overall, of all those people diagnosed with all types of lung cancer at all stages, only about 20 out of every 100 people will be alive for 1 year after diagnosis. About 6 out of every 100 people diagnosed will be alive for 5 years after diagnosis. For those who are able to have surgery to remove their lung cancer, about 20 out of 100 are alive for 5 years later.