A Note On The Variants Of Lung Cancer


Lung cancer begins in the lungs when the cells start to grow uncontrollably. Our lungs are two sponge-like organs and the right lung has 3 sections and the left lung has 2 sections. These sections are generally called the lobes of the lungs. Air enters the human body through the mouth or the nose. This air goes into your lungs via the windpipe or trachea. The trachea divides into small tubes that are called bronchi. These bronchi then branch into networks of smaller tubes called bronchioles that end up in small sacs called alveoli.


Lungs are purposed to assimilate oxygen and eliminate carbon dioxide from the body. The slender lining that encircles the lungs is called the pleura. Together with protecting the lungs, pleura lets them slither to and fro against the chest wall while expanding and contracting, allowing the person to breathe.


Different Types Of Lung Cancer 

As per the experts in many low income health clinics, there are mainly two different types of lung cancers and their treatments vary a lot. Therefore, it is important to exactly diagnose the type of lung cancer that you are suffering from to treat it properly. There are two broad categorizations for lung cancers, each of which is discussed below. 


Non-Small Cell Lung Cancer (NSCLC)

Most lung cancers are non-small cell types. There are many subtypes of this cancer and these subtypes that start from varying types of lung cells are classified together as their outlook and treatment are often similar. Adenocarcinoma starts in the cells that usually secrete substances like mucus and is usually found in former or current smokers. Large cell carcinoma is a type of NSCLC that can emerge in any part of the lungs. It is important to get it diagnosed and treated as early as possible, as this type of cancer spreads quickly. There are also two subtypes of NSCLC that are less commonly found. These are sarcomatoid carcinoma and adenosquamous carcinoma.       


Small Cell Lung Cancer (SCLC)

Oat cell cancer is another popular name for SCLC and accounts for about 15% of all lung cancer cases. This cancer can be effectively treated by usual cancer treatment methods.


Apart from these main types of lung cancers, other tumors can also form in the lungs. If you have any of the symptoms of lung cancer, you need to consult a healthcare professional in any low income clinics in your area to get diagnosed and treated if necessary.

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    About the Author

    Dr. Ghassan M. Al-Jazayrly, MD

    A graduate of University of Aleppo Faculty of Medicine, Dr. Al-Jazayrly or, as he is colloquially known: Dr. AJ, is an oncologist and hematologist of a Complete Care Community Health Center (CCCHC) with more than 36 years of experience. In recent years, he’s been involved with a non profit organization known as Every Woman Counts (EWC) which provides free breast and cervical cancer screening and diagnostic services to California’s underserved populations in order to eliminate health disparities for low-income individuals.

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