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Home >> Specialities >> Cancer Care >> Lung Cancer Treatment

Lung Cancer Treatment

Lung Cancer accounts for 12.2 percent of all cancers affecting people across the globe. Smoking is the leading cause, accounting for 90 percent of lung cancer cases in males and 80 percent in females. In India, lung cancer has an incidence rate of 5.9 percent. Most of the patients who are diagnosed are in the age group of  65 years and above, however, it can also affect those below 45 years of age. 

What is Lung Cancer?
Lung Cancer is one of the leading forms of cancer, that originates from the cells found within the lungs. Lung Cancers are broadly classified into two different types - Small Cell Lung Cancer and Non-Small Cell Lung Cancer. Lung cancer is classified into three different grades - Grade 1, Grade 2, and Grade 3. SCLC or small cell lung carcinoma happens to be the most aggressive form of lung cancer, whereas NSCLC, or non-small cell Lung Cancer happens to be the most common type.

What are the symptoms of Lung Cancer?
Various symptoms that can point towards the possibility of Lung Cancer include:

  • Unexplained chest pain
  • Chronic cough 
  • Cough that aggravates with motion or physical exertion 
  • Breathing difficulties 
  • Coughing up blood 
  • Loss of weight and appetite 
  • Weakness and fatigue 
  • Swallowing difficulties 

When should you see a Specialist?
It is advisable to see a specialist as soon as you detect any of the above-mentioned symptoms. All these just points towards the possibility of you having Lung Cancer but are not definitive. In order to confirm whether a patient has Lung Cancer or not, doctors perform some physical examinations and tests. The sooner you consult a specialist, the quicker your diagnosis will be leading to better treatment outcomes. 

What causes Lung Cancer? 
Smoking is one of the leading known causes of Lung Cancer and so is passive smoke. It releases carcinogenic chemicals, which can damage the cells lining the lungs, and induce DNA changes that can disrupt normal cell multiplication. This can make the cells grow at a much faster pace. The abnormal cells continue to accumulate in the body resulting in the formation of a mass or tumor. There are several other factors that can trigger such changes in the DNA. These include:

  • Exposure to radon gas, asbestos, and other known carcinogens 
  • Exposure to strong radiation 
  • Family history of lung cancer
  • Personal history of cancer

Modalities used for the diagnosis of Lung Cancer 

  • Physical examination
  • Sputum cytology 
  • Biopsy with bronchoscopy, thoracoscopy, or mediastinoscopy 
  • Chest x-ray
  • Computerized tomography or CT scan 
  • PET-CT scan 

Treatment options available for Lung Cancer

  • Surgery (procedures like lobectomy, segmentectomy, wedge resection, and pneumonectomy)
  • Radiation Therapy
  • Chemotherapy
  • Hormone Therapy
  • Targeted Drug Therapy 
  • Immunotherapy 

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