Lung Cancer

This type of cancer may occur in both men and women and accounts for millions of new cases every year. It is one of the deadliest types of this condition and the most common cause of mortality. One of the main organs in the body are lungs and they consist of 5 lobes, three in the right lung and two in the left lung. When a person a breathing, the lungs absorb oxygen from the air and deliver it to the rest of the body through the bloodstream. A malignant tumor in which the cells grow abnormally and uncontrollably in one or both lungs is cancer. It usually appears in the lung tissues or lining cells of the respiratory tract.

Causes of Lung Cancer

There are some factors that are believed to cause lung cancer. Check below some examples:


Usually, one of the most significant causes of lung cancer is cigarette smoking. Tobacco smoke contains thousands of chemicals, which are very harmful. Therefore, these chemicals damage the tissues and the body has to fight to heal the damage provoked by the chemicals. This disease occurs usually due to injury over time. When we inhale the smoke, these chemicals reach our lungs quickly. Thereafter, chemicals reach the blood, which spreads them to other parts of the body. This condition consists of small cell lung cancer and non-small cell lung cancer. The predominant factor for both types of cancer is cigarette smoking.

Another factor that can cause this condition is DNA damage. Therefore, cigarette smoking leads to the accumulation of carcinogens that result in DNA damage.

Additionally, many studies showed that a significant decrease in the risk of development of this cancer was noticed in people who quit smoking. Moreover, quitting smoking also has many benefits for people with lung cancer.


Rocks found in amosite, crocidolite, and chrysotile contain a mineral called Asbestos, which is usually used in many industries. Exposure to asbestos dust is associated with the development of many diseases including lung cancer, according to many studies.

This mineral causes local inflammation and disrupts the orderly cell division, in the lungs. Commonly, the severity of asbestosis depends on the amount of this mineral a person has been exposed to and the length of time. Usually, a tumor can appear due to asbestos fibers in the lungs. These fibers continue to develop even after exposure interrupts. In most cases, asbestos causes bronchial carcinomas in lung cancer. Thus, people who work in places exposed to asbestos and cigarette smoking are at higher risk of developing this type of cancer. According to multiple studies, diseases caused by this mineral lead to thousands of deaths.

Radon Gas

A radioactive gas released from the decay of uranium in rock and soil is called Radon Gas. When uranium naturally breaks down, it produces radon gas. This gas is odorless, tasteless, and invisible that diffuses into the air.

Furthermore, this gas is present in all residential homes but in decreased concentration. Naturally, it is present in rocks, soil, and building materials. That’s why it spreads with relative ease. It also mixes with other gases present in the atmosphere thereby, it is present in water.

In any case, radon gas is present in nearly all air. Therefore, everyone breathes this gas daily, but in reduced concentration. Breathing this gas in high amounts is a higher risk of developing lung cancer. Usually, radon may enter homes through walls, foundations, cracks in floors, and others. In most cases, the basement and first floor have higher radon levels than other floors. It is due to closeness to the ground.

Air Pollution

Air pollution is directly linked with the development of different types of cancer such as lung cancer. Indoor air quality has significant health implications as people usually spend a lot of time indoors. This air may become unhealthy and poisonous.

In addition, tobacco smoking, building materials, and oil gases might make indoor air pollution unhealthy.

Symptoms of Lung Cancer

Symptoms of this condition may be different among patients like all health conditions. Early detection symptoms of cancer include:

If you experience any of the symptoms listed above, immediately consult a healthcare provider.

Types of Lung Cancer

There are two types of lung cancer. For example:

Small Cell Lung Cancer

This is not a common type of lung cancer. It often begins in the middle of the lungs and spreads early. Therefore, it requires a more aggressive clinical treatment course. However, ignoring this condition, the median survival is 2-4 months only.

This type of lung cancer is more aggressive than non-small cell lung cancer because it grows more quickly. The common sites of small cell lung cancer metastasis are bones, the brain, and the gastrointestinal tract. Small cell lung cancer has neuroendocrine characteristics compared to non-small cell lung cancer. It means that this type of lung cancer can receive signals from neurons and release hormones into the blood but non-small cell lung cancer cannot receive alerts.

Non-Small Cell Lung Cancer

This is the most common type of lung cancer, and it usually starts when the healthy cells in the lungs begin to grow abnormally and uncontrollably. Thus, it forms a mass known as a tumor. This tumor can begin anywhere in the lungs as cancerous or benign. In any case, this type of cancer is malignant and can spread to other parts of the body. The only difference between cancerous and benign is that benign cancer cannot spread to other parts of the body. In addition, this type of cancer is also subdivided into three categories. For example:

  • Large Cell Carcinoma – This type of cancer develops in all cells, except cells that produce mucus and line the airways.
  • Squamous Cell Carcinoma – In most cases, this type develops in the cells that line the airways.
  • Adenocarcinoma – Roughly 40% of lung cancer belong to this type. Usually, these tumors begin in the cells that produce mucus.

Stages of Small Cell Lung Cancer

  • In the first stage, healthcare providers diagnose cancer but it is not spread outside the lungs.
  • Second-stage, cancer is found in the lungs near lymph nodes.
  • Small-cell lung cancer is found in the lungs and lymph nodes in the middle of the chest, in the third stage.
  • The last and fourth stage is when this condition is found on both sides of the lungs, areas around the lungs, and distant organs.

How to Prevent Lung Cancer?

Lung cancer may appear due to damage to genes in the lung cells, suggests some evidence. Usually, this damage allows the cells to grow abnormally, which leads to the development of cancer. Another factor that can provoke this health condition is cigarette smoking.

In addition, people who smoke are 25 times more likely to develop lung cancer than those who do not smoke. According to studies, roughly 98% of people with lung cancer are smokers. The same studies suggest that people who breathe other’s tobacco smoke also are at risk of lung cancer. Besides that, coal gas, steel, air pollution, and radiation exposure, can also elevate your risk of developing this condition. Quit smoking, a healthy lifestyle, and diet can help you to decrease the risk of lung cancer. Ask your healthcare provider if you have any questions.

Frequently Asked Questions

Is lung cancer a curable condition?

Certain types of lung cancer can be considered cured if are diagnosed before they spread. In any case, healthcare providers do not use the word “cured” when it comes to cancer. They usually use terms such as “remission” or “no evidence of disease” (NED).

What medications are available for lung cancer treatment?

Physicians usually prescribe Cisplatin, Carboplatin, Pemetrexed, Gemcitabine, and others to treat lung cancer. However, there are other treatment options for this condition such as chemotherapy. Do not administer any medicine without a doctor’s approval because it may lead to unpleasant results.

What are the symptoms of lung cancer?

People with this condition usually experience shortness of breath, wheezing, coughing up blood, chest pain, extreme fatigue all the time, and others. In case you notice any of the previous symptoms, immediately tell your physician.

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