Lungs are the crucial body part performing the function of exchanging gases between the air we breathe and the air retained by our blood. Carbon dioxide is removed from our bloodstream and oxygen enters it through lungs only. In short, we can say that our lungs help to breathe which is one of the primary requirements for staying alive. Before discussing anything else let us first understand what is lung cancer? Lung cancer is the uncontrollable formation of abnormal cells in any part of the lungs. However, the major numbers of lung cancers arise from the epithelial cells, the cells lining the larger and smaller airways. There are two different types of lung cancer one is non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC) and other is small cell lung cancer (SCLC). We will discuss them comprehensively in the coming section of this article.
Do you know lung cancer is known to be one of the most common cancers that are found in men and women? This is due to the immensely increased consumption of tobacco. In the recent researches, it is being found that the major risk factor for lung cancer is smoking. Through this article let us take a look at the various types and stages of lung cancer.
Based on the microscopic appearance of the cells the lung cancer can be broadly divided into two categories the small cell lung cancers (SCLC) and non-small cell lung cancers (NSCLC).
Non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC)
Accounting for about 80-85% of lung cancers, the NSCLC is the most common type of cancer found in people all around the world. The growth of this cancer is comparatively slow when compared to the SCLC. This type of cancer can be further divided into four subtypes-
Small cells lung Cancer (SCLC)
Accounting for about 15% of cancers this is the less common type of type of cancer. However, this type of cancer grows much faster than the NSCLC. Further, it is a neuroendocrine tumor with smaller cells than most other cancers. The SCLC is strongly associated with smoking and only 1% of this cancer is found in non-smokers. Due to their appearance under the microscopic examination, this cancer is also Kwon as the oat cell carcinoma.
There are multiple stages of both types of cancer depending upon the extent cancer has spread in your body. While determining the stage of cancer it size and penetration into the surrounding tissues are evaluated. It is very crucial to determine the accurate stage in order to determine the type of treatment the patient requires.
Stages of NSCLC cancer
Stage 1 is the early stage of cancer in which it is confined to the lung area only.
Stage 2 and stage 3- It is a stage in which cancer is has moved out of the lung but is limited to the chest only.
Stage 4 – It is a final stage lung cancer where it has started to spread in the other body parts of the person like the liver or other organs.
Stages of SCLC Cancer
Limited Stage- It is the initial stage of cancer when it is found on one side of the chest involving one part of the lung and the surrounding lymph nodes.
Extensive stage- It is the advanced stage in which cancer has spread to other parts of the chest or several other parts of the body.
Also Read lung cancer treatment in India.