Lung cancer – a malignant tumor that develops from epithelial lung tissue. There are two forms: central lung cancer originating from the bronchi, and peripheral cancer that develops from within the lung tissue.
Lung cancer is one of the most common cancers. Despite the best efforts for its prevention, the incidence rate since the beginning of the XX century has grown several dozen times. Lung cancer is leading reasons of mortality in many countries from oncological diseases among men. Primarily, it is connected with the fact that the initial stages of lung cancer occur almost asymptomatic and patients address to the doctor too late.
Causes of disease
The cause of any malignant disease is damage to the DNA of cells, which occurs under the influence of various environmental factors. In the case of lung cancer such factors may be smoking, work in hazardous industries, inhalation of different resins, Coke, ethers and other harmful substances. The increased incidence of lung cancer in miners, steelmaking workers, woodworking, iron and steel industry, ceramic asbestos-cement and phosphate production.
According to statistics, lung cancer in smokers is observed much more frequently than non-smokers. Explanation of this fact is quite simple. Tobacco smoke contains both physical and chemical factors of carcinogenesis in large quantities. About 80% of patients with this pathology are a smokers. Development of lung cancer may be preceded by chronic inflammation: chronic pneumonia, bronchiectasis, chronic bronchitis, scarring in the lung, tuberculosis, etc.
The symptoms of lung cancer
– Shortness of breath;
– Chest pain;
– loss of body weight.
Unfortunately, the symptoms of lung cancer are non-specific, ie, characteristic of many respiratory diseases. That’s why patients do not immediately go to the doctor, and the diagnosis is not timely in many cases.
Identification of most of these symptoms should alert and get immediate medical attention. You also need to pay attention to such indirect signs like lethargy, listlessness, loss of activity. Rising temperatures may also mask the lung cancer by bronchitis or pneumonia.
Treatment and Diagnostics
If you or a loved one diagnosed with lung cancer should begin treatment immediately and to act in accordance with the doctor’s recommendations. But do not resort to self-medication and the methods of alternative medicine.
In more than 15% of people the initial stages of lung cancer occur completely asymptomatic, and therefore to suspect its presence is possible only through an annual survey – fluorography or X-ray. For further diagnose lung cancer can be used the following methods :
- CT scan;
- Transthoracic puncture;
- Needle biopsy of lymph nodes;
- Determination of the level of tumor markers in the blood.
Depending on the form and stage of the cancer of lung oncologist assigns the required treatment program. Apply simultaneously methods of surgical treatment, radiation therapy and chemotherapy.
The prognosis of lung cancer depends primarily on the process stage in which it is diagnosed, as well as histological picture tumor.
Lung cancer may metastasize into lymphatic nodes of the root of the lung, mediastinum, and a distant group in the neck, the supraclavicular area. Also, lung cancer can spread to the liver, bones, brain, and the second lung.
Prevention of lung cancer
Preventive measures include timely and proper treatment of various inflammatory processes in the bronchi and lungs, in order to prevent their transition into chronic forms. Very important preventive measure is the smoking cessation. Workers in hazardous industries with high dust content should use personal protection methods: masks, respirators, etc.