Holistic Treatment For Lung Cancer in Scottsdale, AZ
Lung Cancer Is One Of The Most Widespread Cancer Types In The United States And Is Treatable At All Stages, Though Prognosis Declines As The Cancer Advances.
The lungs are the two organs located beneath the rib cage that provides life-sustaining oxygen throughout the body. They are neither symmetrical nor functionally identical, with the left lung consisting of two lobes and the right three. Lung cancer begins when cells of a lung become abnormal and begin growing out of control. When the abnormal cancer cells grow, they can form into a tumor and even spread to other areas of the body (metastasize).
Lung cancer is designated by two types. Both are named for the kinds of cells found in cancer and how the cells appear when viewed under a microscope. The cancer cells of each type grow and spread in different ways.
- Non-Small Cell Lung Cancer (NSCLC) – The more common type of lung cancer.
- Small Cell Lung Cancer (SCLC) – The less common type of lung cancer.
If you or someone you know has recently been diagnosed with lung cancer, it’s important to gather and learn as much information about the disease as possible. The integrative oncology team at Brio Medical in Scottsdale, Arizona is experienced in the holistic treatment of lung cancer and is here to help guide you through your cancer care journey.
What Is Lung Cancer?
Normal cells divide in a regulated way to form new cells, and after performing their functions for a while, they die. Cancer cells do not always die. Instead, these abnormal cells change their makeup and begin to multiply in an uncontrolled way. The cells join together and form a tumor.
Lung cancer is the growth of abnormal cells in one or both lungs. As these unhealthy cells form tumors, they block the ability of the lungs to provide oxygen to the body via the bloodstream. Cancer cells may remain localized, or they may metastasize (spread) and invade other parts of the body.
Lung cancers take a variety of forms, including
- Squamous cell carcinoma (also called epidermoid carcinoma), which begins in the tissues that line the lungs and is most common in smokers
- Adenocarcinoma, which is a tumor that starts in the cells lining the glands
- Bronchoalveolar carcinoma, which is a form of adenocarcinoma that affects more women and nonsmokers than other types of lung cancers
- Mesothelioma, which is rare cancer associated with exposure to asbestos and smoking
Resources for more information:
- The National Cancer Institute’s booklet, What You Need To Know About ™ Lung Cancer
- LungCancer.org’s “Lung Cancer 101”
Symptoms of Lung Cancer
In the earliest stages, a patient may not experience symptoms. However, as the condition advances, a patient may notice
- A new cough that does not go away
- Changes in a chronic cough
- Coughing up blood (even a small amount)
- Shortness of breath
Patients with concerns about any of the signs and symptoms listed above are urged to consult their physician immediately.
Causes of Lung Cancer
People who smoke have the greatest risk of cancer. The risk increases with the frequency and duration of an individual’s exposure to tobacco—whether through smoking or by secondhand contact. Tobacco smoke damages the cells that line the lungs. Cigarette smoke contains cancer-causing substances (carcinogens) that alter lung tissue. The damage worsens with repeated exposure. Over time, the injured cells become abnormal, multiply, and form tumors.
People who quit smoking—even those who have smoked for many years—can significantly reduce their chances of developing cancer of the lungs.
Other factors that increase lung cancer risk include:
- Inhaling secondhand smoke
- Exposure to radon gas
- Breathing in asbestos and other chemicals
- A family medical history
- A history of certain other lung diseases
- Excessive alcohol use
- A combination of the above
Cancer of the lung can also afflict nonsmokers and people who have never had prolonged exposure to secondhand smoke.