Non-small cell lung cancer
All types and types of malignant tumors that affect the respiratory system and are not suitable for describing the small cell, are combined by the termnon-small cell lung cancer. According to statistics, this type of cancer affects more than 80% of all cases of cancer detection.
To the described type of oncology include the following types of cancer:
- Lung adenocarcinoma - this species grows rather slowly. Adenocarcinoma accounts for about 40% of all cases of non-small cell cancer.
- Squamous cell carcinoma of the lungs occurs in 20-25% of cases. Localization - pulmonary airways.
- Large cell carcinoma - it accounts for up to 15% of diseases. It is characterized by the rapidity of spread, which makes it difficult to treat.
- Mixed Cancer.
What is dangerous for non-small cell lung cancer?
The main danger of this type of cancer is the calm course of the first three stages of the disease. In the vast majority of cases (about 70%), the disease is diagnosed already in 3-4 stages. In case of late detection, non-small cell lung cancer can not be completely cured, as a result of which the 5th survival threshold is crossed by no more than 20% of patients.
In addition, the spread of cancer cells to other internal organs. The intensity of metastasis in different forms of non-small cell lung cancer is very different. The main organs that undergo metastasis formation are:
- The lymph nodes;
- digestive organs;
- adrenal glands;
- a heart;
Complete recovery is possible only in case of timely diagnosis and properly selected therapy.
Is it possible to identify NSCLC at an early stage?
Despite the fact that NSCLC is difficult to identify at the initial stages of development, there are a number of symptoms that appear especially if they manifest themselves in a complex way), an oncologist should immediately be contacted to confirm or deny the presence cancerous tumor:
The first sign of the appearance of lung cancer is coughing. To sound the alarm is when it is lingering, dry, accompanied by pain and cuts, as well as the release of mucus with an admixture of blood.
Against the background of the weakening of immunity, the body quickly becomes tired, often there are strong dizziness, fainting, there is a chronic decline in strength.
Non-small cell lung cancer is often accompanied by an unpleasant odor from the respiratory tract, shortness of breath, heavy breathing (especially at night).
There is an elevated body temperature (around 37-38 degrees), which does not decrease for a long time.
Pain in the sternum:
If chest pains occur, oncologists are also advised not to delay with a visit a specialized clinic - the germination of a tumor in the bronchi leads to the emergence of painful sensations in the sternum.
Pain in the bones:
When metastasizing cancer cells into bone tissues, often the appearance of pain in the bones (most often they are felt in the spine).
It is worth noting that all without exception the above symptoms alone can not be considered a confirmation of the presence of a cancerous tumor in lungs, as they can indicate the passage in the body of other pathological processes (tuberculosis, osteochondrosis, pneumonia).
Particular attention to the manifestation of all the symptoms should be given to smokers, since the group of people who are the first to fall into the risk group are the smokers.
What is included in the medical diagnosis of non-small cell lung cancer?
In case of complex manifestation of the main symptoms of NSCLC, it is necessary to undergo a full examination immediately and to pass all the necessary tests to confirm or refute the diagnosis:
- It is mandatory to give a general and biochemical blood test, lung markers (to detect cancer cells in the blood).
- X-ray examination of the lungs is necessary to determine the location of the cancer tumor (if any).
- Reconstructive tomography is performed to determine the presence of metastases in the body. In addition, with the help of this study it is possible to accurately determine the stage of the course of the disease.
- Special molecular and genetic studies help to identify certain nuances of the course of the disease.
Unfortunately, it is only 30% of cases that cancer is detected in the early stages, when the disease still lends itself to successful treatment.
At stage 3-4, non-small cell lung cancer can no longer be surgically treated, and due to the widespread spread of metastasis, cancer cells affect most internal organs. The vast majority of patients die in the first 4-5 years of the disease.
Nevertheless, when choosing the right method of treatment, the prognosis is significantly improved. Surgical intervention is advisable only in the early stages, when metastases have not yet affected other internal organs. Chemotherapy in combination with radiotherapy also brings good results. In some cases it is possible to achieve an increase in life expectancy of up to 10 years.
When NSCLC is detected in 4 stages, expensive treatment is not worthwhile, since in this case the disease no longer responds to therapy, but is performed only to prolong the life of the oncological patient..