Lung carcinoma is the foremost cause of cancer-related death in the world. Approximately 85% of cases are related to cigarette smoking. Its symptoms can consist of cough, weight loss, hemoptysis, chest discomfort or pain, and, less commonly; however, a lot of patients present with metastatic disease with no any clinical symptoms.
The diagnosis is in general completed by chest x-ray or CT scan and confirmed by biopsy. Depending on the stage of the disease, treatment includes surgery, radiation therapy, chemotherapy, or a combination.
With no treatment, small cell carcinoma of the lung has the most aggressive clinical course of any kind of pulmonary tumor, with median survival from diagnosis of simply 2 to 4 months. Small cell carcinoma, if compared with other cell types of lung cancer, has a greater tendency to be further spread by the time of diagnosis, but is much more responsive to chemotherapy and irradiation.
Non-small cell lung cancer is divided further into adenocarcinoma, squamous cell carcinoma, and also large cell carcinoma histologies. All of them share similar treatment approaches and prognoses but have different histologic and clinical characteristics.
Each kind of non-small cell lung cancer has different types of cancer cells. The cancer cells of every type develop and extend in different ways. They are named for the types of cells established in the cancer and how the cells look under a microscope:
* Squamous cell carcinoma: Cancer that starts in squamous cells, which are thin, flat cells that look like fish scales.
* Large cell carcinoma: Cancer that may start in a number of types of large cells.
* Adenocarcinoma: Cancer that starts in the cells that line the alveoli and make substances like mucus.
Other less common types of non-small cell lung cancer are: pleomorphic, salivary gland carcinoma, carcinoid tumor, and unclassified carcinoma.