Braya Hafler Period 9
What is it?
Lung Cancer is one of the most common forms of cancer and it begins in the lungs. Everyone can obtain this type of cancer however it is more common amongst those who smoke or inhale other dangerous substances into the lungs. Several known casues include inhaling second-hand smoke, inhaling dangerous toxins and family history. Doctors believe that smoking and inhaling other toxins into the lungs damages the cells that line the lungs, weakening them and causing mutations that lead to cancer and other infections and diseases.
Any cancer diagnosis is an unhappy experience for a patient, especially when there are no symtoms in the early stages. This, unfortunately, is the case with lung cancer. Signs generally do not appear until the disease is more advanced. After some advancement of the disease, several symptoms occur. These symptoms include chest pain, wheezing, coughing up blood, shortness of breath and changes in chronic cough or a new cough.
Unfortunately, there is no way to cure or prevent lung cancer indefinitely, however there are a few simple things you can to in order to be proactive and limit your chances of accumulating the disease. For instance, you can stop smoking and try to avoid second-hand smoke to keep your lungs healthy. Also, having your home tested for radon and doing your best to avoid known carcinogens in the workplace.
Diagnosis and Treatment
There are many ways to diagnose and treat lung cancer. DIagnosis generally starts with imaging tests or a biopsy of potentially dangerous cells. These tests help doctors pinpoint the location and stage of the cancer if, in fact, the patient does receive a diagnosis. Following the offical diagnosis, doctors will work with the patient to determine the proper course of action for that specific patient. Treatments may include surgery, where they may remove portions of the lung or the whole lung, chemotherapy, radiation therapy and targeted drug therapy. Occasionally, patients may opt to be a part of a clinical trial meaning that they will essentially be part of an experiment that studies new and varied modes of treatment,
The statistics involving lung cancer are shocking. The five-year survival rate when the cancer stays only in the lungs is 54%. However, if the cancer were to move to other organs and start tumors, the five-year survival rate is only 4%. In addition, unfortunately, only 15% of cases are detected early