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Lung Cancer - A Deadly Disease
By Brenda Williams

This is one of the deadliest diseases in the country and occurs when there is uncontrolled cell growth in the tissues of the lung or lungs. The growth, even though it might begin in the lungs, can move to other organs within the body. This is known as metastasis. Metastasis is the invasion of adjacent tissue and infiltration. Lung cancer is the most common cause of cancer related death in men and the second most in women. It is responsible for 1.3 million deaths worldwide annually. How do you know if you should be tested for lung cancer Some symptoms include shortness of breath, coughing up blood, and massive amounts of weight loss.

Most lung cancer patients are treated with chemotherapy but some are able to be treated through surgical procedures. There are two types of lung cancer. They are small cell lung carcinoma and non-small cell carcinoma. The latter is treated with surgery. The most known common cause of lung cancer is the most obvious cause; extended exposure to tobacco smoke. There is an occurrence of lung cancer in non-smokers. The causes are genetics, radon gas, asbestos, air pollution and second-hand smoke.

Lung cancer can be seen with a chest x-ray or a CT scan and is confirmed by having a biopsy. Lung cancer is so deadly that the five year survival rate with treatment is only 14 percent. Other symptoms of lung cancer are the loss of an appetite, chest pain, a hoarse voice, difficulty swallowing, wheezing, clubbing of the fingernails. Many sufferers of lung cancer have an obstruction of their airflow, causing breathing problems, and in turn helping pneumonia develop. The pneumonia develops from an accumulation of secretions around the blockage.

Close to 90 percent of all lung cancer related deaths are caused by smoking across the globe. That number is trimmed, ever so slightly, to 87 percent of deaths in the United States. How do you prevent lung cancer? The most obvious answer is to avoid the habit of smoking during a lifetime and to stay away from becoming a victim of second-hand smoke as much as possible.

Most lung cancers, if localized, can be surgically removed. If the tumor is localized it means that it has yet to spread to other tissues within the body and other organs within the body. If the cancer has spread, surgery to cure the problem is almost out of the question, and the doctor will more than likely recommend chemotherapy.

Just a bit of history regarding the disease. The first successful pneumonectomy to cure lung cancer was carried out in 1933 and radiotherapy has been used to cure lung cancer sine the early 1940's. Successful chemotherapy treatments were invented in the decade of the 1970's.

Lung cancer can be avoided by making smart life decisions like not smoking, avoiding heavy second-hand smoke and eating healthy. If you suffer from any of the symptoms mentioned above consult a physician immediately.

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