Lung cancer is the most common cancer in the world. This is mainly due to the high prevalence of smoking in the population. The presenting symptoms usually include chronic coughing, blood in the sputum, breathlessness, chest pain or sometimes something as innocuous as weight loss. Treatment if done early has good results but delayed treatment is grim in prognosis. The treatment modalities include a combination of surgery, chemotherapy and sometimes radiation.
In general two subtypes of lung cancer are seen, the more common Non-small cell lung cancer and the less common Small cell lung cancer. The main modality of treatment of the non-small cell variety includes surgery with removal of the cancerous segment. Depending on the extensiveness of the cancer, the surgeries include lobectomy, segmentectomy and pneumonectomy. Post operative chemotherapy or radiation therapy may also be required. This may also be given pre-operatively in some cases.
The small cell variety is sometimes called the most dangerous form of cancer present. It is mainly treated with chemotherapy and sometimes radiation. Surgery has very little if not no role in these cancers.
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