What are the most common Lung Cancer Treatment therapies:
Lung Cancer is a deadly disease and apart from affecting the person suffering from this fatal disease, it also affects their loved ones. In 2018 alone, over 9.8 million people died of different kinds of cancer. Cancer can start anywhere in the body which if overlooked for a longer time can spread rigorously to other parts of the body. However, the most common form of cancer is Lung Cancer and makes up almost 25% of all cancer deaths(both men and women).
Even though lung cancer can be caused due to a number of reasons, the main reason behind it is smoking and a sedentary lifestyle. However, the vast number of deaths due to lung cancer, is a result of lack of knowledge(to some extent) and therefore, people overlook it during the early stages which causes it to spread flungurther, making it difficult to treat and contain.
Here we will be learning about the symptoms, causes, types of lung cancer and most importantly what are the methods involved in lung cancer treatment. So let’s start with the causes and symptoms first:
Causes and Symptoms of Lung Cancer:
Symptoms of Lung Cancer:
- Smokers Cough(due to excessive smoking)
- Blood while coughing
- Chest pain
- Weight Loss
- Frequent Headaches
- Hoarseness of voice(Dysphonia)
- Difficulty in breathing (Dyspnea)
Causes Lung Cancer:
- Smoking is undoubtedly the primary cause of Lung Cancer.
- Passive Smoking
- Exposure to polluted Air
- Radon Radiation
- Exposure to Asbestos
- Individual Genetics
Types of Lung Cancer:
There are two main types of lung cancer:
- Small-cell Lung Cancer(SCLC): Most common type of lung cancer which grows aggressively to other parts of the body.
- Non-small-cell lung cancer(NSCLC): Grows slowly and takes much longer time to spread to other parts of the body.
Lung Cancer Treatment:
There are many treatments for lung cancer available now, owing to the advancements in technology and the medical field. However, treatment methods vary from person to person depending on the type of cancer and the individual’s genetic, immune system, etc. Here are the most popular treatment therapies for lung cancer:
Surgical procedure to treat lung cancer involves the removal of the tumorous lobe and even the whole lung in some cases. This treatment therapy is preferred when the cancer is confined to the lungs only. It can further be done in the following ways:
- Wedge resection or Segmentectomy or Sublobar resection is a procedure where a just the portion of the lung that is affected is removed which may include a few healthy cells too.
- Segmental resection involves the removal of a larger section of the lung excluding the complete lobe.
- Lobectomy involves the entire lobe of the lung that is affected.
- Pneumonectomy involves the removal of a full lung that is affected.
Radiation therapy or radiosurgery lung cancer treatment procedure involves the use of high-power X Rays to either slow down the rapidly dividing cancer cells or to kill them completely. It is widely used as a primary treatment and also to shrink the tumor before putting the patient into surgery. It can also be used to get rid of the remaining cancer cells after surgery.
Chemotherapy is a drug therapy that uses drugs to kill cancer cells. The drugs used are mostly injected directly or via a catheter placed in a large vein. New treatment therapy involving combining chemotherapy with radiation therapy is becoming popular, however, there may be serious side effects and researchers are still finding a way to effectively combine them.
Targeted Drug Therapy:
Targeted Drug therapy is another widely preferred cancer treatment method that uses targeted drugs to fight irregularities in the cancer cells like genetic irregularities.
The world is fast developing which has made it easy to treat diseases like lung cancer which were once considered untreatable. However, even though cure for such diseases is now available, one should always consider ‘Prevention which is undoubtedly better than cure.