Diagnosis and Staging

Lung Cancer Diagnosis and Treatment

  • Department of:
  • Adena Regional Medical Center

To learn more about the Adena Cancer Care Center or to request an appointment, please call 740-542-3030.

There are two main types of lung cancer — small cell and non-small cell — which are treated very differently. The third type, carcinoid tumors, is rare. The course of treatment for these cancers is based largely on the cancer’s stage, which is determined by the size of the tumor and whether it has spread to the lymph nodes or other organs in the body. The location of the tumor plays a role as well. As with other types of cancer, the earlier lung cancer is detected, the better.

Cancer Type

About

Diagnosis

Treatment Options

Small Cell Cancer

Representing about 10 to 15 percent of all lung cancers, it commonly starts in the bronchi near the center of the chest. These cancer cells can divide quickly and form large tumors. They can also spread to lymph nodes and other organs.  

Typically not found until symptoms (such as a cough that doesn’t go away, hoarseness, coughing up blood or shortness of breath) develop. 

Through imaging tests such as a chest X-ray, CT scan, MRI as well as a test (such as a biopsy) that collects cells for examination under a microscope.

Surgery is seldom an option for this type of lung cancer because of how quickly it spreads.

Chemotherapy is a common option because it can treat cells throughout the body.

Non-Small Cell

The most common form of lung cancer, this type tends to grow and spread more slowly.

Typically not found until symptoms (such as a cough that doesn’t go away, hoarseness, coughing up blood or shortness of breath) develop.

Through imaging tests such as a chest X-ray, CT scan, MRI as well as a test (such as a biopsy)  that collects cells for examination under a microscope.

Surgery (to remove a part of the lung or the whole lung) is often an option for those whose cancer hasn’t spread past nearby lymph nodes. Depending on the cancer, chemotherapy after surgery may be needed.

If the cancer has spread, chemotherapy alone or a combination of chemotherapy and radiation is used.

 

 

Carcinoid Tumors

Representing about 1 to 2 percent of all lung cancers, this rare type of tumor is a relatively slow-growing cancer.

Symptoms will vary depending on where the tumor is located, but include coughing, wheezing or trouble breathing.

Through imaging tests such as a chest X-ray, CT scan, MRI as well as a test (such as a biopsy)  that collects cells for examination under a microscope.

The stage of the cancer and other factors affect whether surgery, radiation, chemotherapy or other drugs are called for.

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