Lung cancer is a form of cancer that develops in the lungs and spreads throughout the body. Whenever cells in the lungs divide uncontrolled, it results in the development of malignant tumours.
According to statistics, lung cancer accounted for 14% of all male and 7.5% women cancer cases between 2014 and 2018. Lung cancer is the top cause of cancer death in Singapore for men (26.4%) and females (15.7%).
Smoking is considered one common reason for this condition, where breathing difficulties can occur, and the infection can spread. Lung cancer can be lethal, but advances in diagnostics and radiation therapy in Singapore enhance patients’ prognoses.
It is rare for lung cancer symptoms to manifest themselves till cancer has progressed to other sections of the body. It is why it is advisable to consult a radiation oncologist in Singapore immediately if you experience any symptoms.
Considering that lung cancer continues to claim the lives of millions of people, we must better understand the condition and what we can do to increase our chances of surviving it.
Risk Factors of Lung Cancer
When it comes to diseases such as cancer, a risk factor raises a person’s likelihood of contracting the disease. Various malignancies are associated with a variety of risk factors.
Cigarette smoking is perhaps the most significant risk factor for lung cancer. Estimation shows that smoking is responsible for lung cancer deaths. It is significantly more common in smokers than in non-smokers. The length of time you smoke and the number of packs you smoke per day increase your risk of lung cancer.
Smoke begins to damage your lung tissue when it enters your lungs through your mouth or nose. Even while the lungs can repair the damage, repeated exposure to tobacco smoke makes it challenging for the lungs to keep up with the pace of repairs.
According to a radiation doctor in Singapore, even low-tar and menthol cigarettes still raise the chance for lung cancer.
Second-hand smoke is a mixture of nicotine from the burning end of a cigarette combined with the smoke exhaled by smokers. Secondary smoking has immediate negative impacts on health and can lead to coronary heart disease and stroke in susceptible individuals.
Inhaling second-hand smoke can have significant damaging consequences on your blood and blood vessels, raising your risk of developing heart problems. These modifications have the potential to result in a fatal heart attack that you may need to get checked on by a radiation oncologist in Singapore.
Lung cancer can develop after being exposed to radon for an extended period. Radon is a radioactive gas that happens in the environment produced by the decay of uranium in soil and rocks.
Outside, there is so little radon that it is unlikely to pose a health hazard. However, radon concentrations can be higher indoors. The act of inhaling exposes your lungs to minute quantities of radiation material that damages lung cells, potentially resulting in lung cancer.
Lung cancer induced by asbestos is associated with breathing asbestos fibres. Workers exposed to asbestos and also smoke have a significantly increased chance of developing lung cancer. In addition, people exposed to high levels of asbestos are at increased risk of getting mesothelioma, a type of cancer that starts in the pleura.
Pleural mesothelioma is a rare cancer that forms in the lining of the lungs rather than inside of the lung. Both illnesses take decades to develop but only a few months to expand or grow after they have begun to grow.
However, asbestos exposure is responsible for six times the number of incidences of lung cancer than mesothelioma. When it comes to asbestos-related diseases, lung cancer is by far the most severe.
Types of Lung Cancer
Small Cell Lung Cancer
Small cell lung cancer classifies into small cell carcinoma and mixed small cell/significant cell malignancy, sometimes known as combination small cell lung cancer. When studied under a lens, the different varieties of small cell lung cancer are distinguished by the types of cells found within the malignancy and the appearance of those cells. Smoking cigarettes is typically always a risk factor for small cell lung cancer.
Non-Small Cell Lung Cancer
It is more common to develop non-small cell lung cancer. This factor causes approximately most lung cancer cases. Compared to small cell lung cancer, non-small cell lung cancer grows and gradually travels to certain other body parts.
The three types of NSCLC are:
- squamous cell cancer
- large cell carcinoma
Stages of Lung Cancer
When lung cancer is detected and cured in its early stages before it has spread, the chances of a successful or curable therapy increase significantly; here are the stages of lung cancer depending on its type.
Small cell lung cancer is composed of two stages:
Limited stage: The term refers to cancer that has spread only to one section of the chest, and radiation therapy in Singapore may be an option for treatment. When a person is first diagnosed with SCLC, approximately one out of three has limited stage disease.
Extensive stage: This stage is where the cancer is present in other regions of the opposite lungs and other organs.
Non-small cell lung cancer progresses through four stages:
Stage 1: Cancer has been discovered in the lungs but has not moved outside of the lungs.
Stage 2: At this stage, doctors discovered cancer in the lungs and adjacent lymph nodes.
Stage 3: Also called the middle stage, cancer has spread to the lungs and lymph nodes in the middle of the chest.
Stage 3A: Cancer has been discovered in lymph nodes, but exclusively on the side of the heart where cancer first began to spread.
Stage 3B: When the Cancer has advanced to lymph nodes on the other side of the chest or lymph nodes above the collarbone.
Stage 4: During the fourth stage of the disease, you can find cancer in both lungs, areas surrounding the lungs, or internal tissues.
Dr Johann Tang
In Mount Elizabeth, a trusted radiation doctor like Dr Johann Tang offers expertise in cancer with a competitive radiation cost in Singapore.