Lung cancer is the deadliest by far of the major cancers, and it's almost entirely caused by smoking. Although majority of lung cancer patients are male, women with this desease are becoming more common. It is increasingly being a threat to people of the United States and the world.
Like all cancers, lung cancer happens when the cell growth is uncontrolled. When a carcinogen damages a cell's DNA, lung cancer is developed. In most cases, it starts in the tissue by the tuve that supplies the lungs with air, called the bronchi.
A carcinogen is a substance that causes cancer. Since the advancement of tedhnology, there have been hundreds of different carcinogens found. The many causes are classified into four categories: chemicals, radiation, viruses and the body itself. These four agents, working alone or together, may cause cancer in some people, but not others.
Exactly fifteen percent of lung cancer cases are caused by carcinogens like secondhand smoke, radon, asbestos, nickel, petroleum, coal gas and radiation. The most dangerous of all factors that cause cancer are secondhand smoke, radon and asbestos. These three are present in both the home and workplace, taking 5000 lives each year.
Cigareete smoking is the main cause for lung cancer in men and women. The development of this can be increased by amount smoked, mixture of tar, nicotine and age when smoking started. From the 12,000 deaths each year from lung cancer in the U.S., that aren't caused by smoking, 2,500 to 8,400 are linked to secondhand. The smoke that comes from a lighted cigarette has more harmful chemicals than the smoke inhaled by the smoker.
Lung cancer usually doesn't cause any symptoms until it is well anchored into the lung. By the time symptoms have occurred, it may have spread to other parts of the body. Most commonly seen is fatigue, but is often neglected as a problem. Sometimes unrelated effects occur: headaches, weakness, loss of memory and slurred speech.
The stages cancer advances to determine a person's life span. In the first stage, cancer is only found in a few layers of cells and has not grown. He or she will have a seventy to eighty percent five year survival rate. Cancer is confined to the lung in the second stage. During the third stage, the cancerous cells penetrate nearby tissues. The fourth stage cancerous cells spread to the chest wall. The fianl stage of lung cancer is very deadly because it has spread throughout the body, leaving the patient with less than a two percent five year survival rate.
At the beginning of the 1900s, it was a rare disease. Researchers found less than eighty cases. From 1950 to 1988, the death rate increased dramatically. It's been the numver one killer among cancers since 1985. In 1994, the U.S. listed 172,000 new cases and 153,000 deaths. Lung cancer's fatalities make it second to heart disease for cause of death. The death rate is so high because most cases have spread through the body without being found.
Lung cancer is sometimes detected by using x-rays to photograph the lungs. Another device that aids doctors to find cancer is a bronchoscope. The flexible tube must enter the lungs through the nose. A light attached at the end lets the doctor inspect for any particular signs. Sometimes, the best tests aren't good enough. Since no test is 100 percent accurate, nonce can detect very early symptoms.
Because less than one in five cancers are found early, the disease more often leads to a path of destruction. There are several ways to treat it. One such as phot dynamic therapy, involves no surgery, radiation or chemotherapy. The wedge resection treatment is a process when a small portion of a lung is removed. In pneumonectomy, the whole lung is taken out. Although technology to help lung cancer victims have improved, the total forecast is not good. Only thirteen percent of all lung cancer patients survive five years.
Medical researchers have come a long way to treat cancer, but there are still questions unanswered. It's a fact that smoking, radiation and certain viruses cause lung cancer, but one question that still remains a mystery is why do some people not get cancer?