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Thread: Lung Cancer -- Types and sub-types

  1. #1
    Top User pbj11's Avatar
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    Lung Cancer -- Types and sub-types

    This might be helpful to those newly diagnosed or their family members.

    Lung Cancer has two main types: Small Cell Lung Cancer (SCLC) & Non Small Cell Lung Cancer (NSCLC)
    --------------------------------------------------------
    SCLC has two stages at diagnosis:
    LD-SCLC (Limited) - the cancer is contained in the chest area and is curable.
    ED-SCLC (Extensive) - the cancer has spread outside of the chest area.

    Small cell cancers tend to have very rapid growth and can quickly spread to other areas of the body. Initially, it typically shows a good response to radiation/chemotherapy, but is well known to reoccur. SCLC is also be referred to as Oat Cell. There has been some movement in the medical community to stage SCLC the same way as NSCLC (stages I-IV), but I haven't seen this utilized much yet.
    ----------------------------------------------------------
    NSCLC has multiple stages at diagnosis (I-IV), which only your doctor can determine, but has many types:

    ADENOCARCINOMA - tends to have growth more toward the outer area of the lung.
    ---- BAC or Bronchioloalveolar Carcinoma is a sub-type of Adenocarcinoma which tends to have a slower growth rate, that lends itself to better control and survival rates.

    SQUAMOUS CELL - tends to grow near the center of the lung.

    LARGE CELL - grows in any part of the lung and has a faster rate of growth than the other two types of NSCLC.

    There are also some types that have neuroendocrine features to the cells. NSCLC can also present as two different types. Treatment wise, it doesn't really matter. The Stage dictates what treatment applies i.e. surgery or radiation in conjunction with chemotherapy.
    -------------------------------------------------------
    Within these sub-types it should be noted that on a cellular level, you can find classifications of differentiation under a microscope -- Well, Moderate, Poor, or Undifferentiated. The thinking in the medical community is that the poorer the differentiation (or mutation of what the normal cell should look like) the worse the prognosis. Lung cancer cells, in general, are more resistant to treatment than other types of cancer. That is why it continues to have the highest death rates of all the cancers.
    ---------------------------------------------------------
    ***The caveat for all of the above information is that there are no absolutes statistically for any lung cancer prognosis. There are many people walking around who have responded well to chemotherapy/radiation/surgery despite an initial dismal diagnosis. In every cancer there are those who defy the odds and there is nothing that says YOU CAN'T BE ONE OF THEM!! ***

  2. #2

    Re: pulmonary intemel sarcoma (blood vessels)

    anybody out there dealing with this type of cancer, they say it's very rare, everything i've read about it does'nt give much hope of a cure, my friend was been treated for clots on the lungs, but when they opened him up they found tumors, they said they removed 75% of the tumor, so they r starting radiation next wk, is it really necessary to use steroids during treatment? i've read so much bad stuff about the side effects of steroids.
    please help with any advise!!
    Quote Originally Posted by pbj11
    This might be helpful to those newly diagnosed or their family members.

    Lung Cancer has two main types: Small Cell Lung Cancer (SCLC) & Non Small Cell Lung Cancer (NSCLC)
    --------------------------------------------------------
    SCLC has two stages at diagnosis:
    LD-SCLC (Limited) - the cancer is contained in the chest area and is curable.
    ED-SCLC (Extensive) - the cancer has spread outside of the chest area.

    Small cell cancers tend to have very rapid growth and can quickly spread to other areas of the body. Initially, it typically shows a good response to radiation/chemotherapy, but is well known to reoccur. SCLC is also be referred to as Oat Cell. There has been some movement in the medical community to stage SCLC the same way as NSCLC (stages I-IV), but I haven't seen this utilized much yet.
    ----------------------------------------------------------
    NSCLC has multiple stages at diagnosis (I-IV), which only your doctor can determine, but has many types:

    ADENOCARCINOMA - tends to have growth more toward the outer area of the lung.
    ---- BAC or Bronchioloalveolar Carcinoma is a sub-type of Adenocarcinoma which tends to have a slower growth rate, that lends itself to better control and survival rates.

    SQUAMOUS CELL - tends to grow near the center of the lung.

    LARGE CELL - grows in any part of the lung and has a faster rate of growth than the other two types of NSCLC.

    There are also some types that have neuroendocrine features to the cells. NSCLC can also present as two different types. Treatment wise, it doesn't really matter. The Stage dictates what treatment applies i.e. surgery or radiation in conjunction with chemotherapy.
    -------------------------------------------------------
    Within these sub-types it should be noted that on a cellular level, you can find classifications of differentiation under a microscope -- Well, Moderate, Poor, or Undifferentiated. The thinking in the medical community is that the poorer the differentiation (or mutation of what the normal cell should look like) the worse the prognosis. Lung cancer cells, in general, are more resistant to treatment than other types of cancer. That is why it continues to have the highest death rates of all the cancers.
    ---------------------------------------------------------
    ***The caveat for all of the above information is that there are no absolutes statistically for any lung cancer prognosis. There are many people walking around who have responded well to chemotherapy/radiation/surgery despite an initial dismal diagnosis. In every cancer there are those who defy the odds and there is nothing that says YOU CAN'T BE ONE OF THEM!! ***

  3. #3
    Top User pbj11's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2007
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    Kate,

    I'm sorry for such a shocking discovery for your friend. I have never heard of this cancer (pulmonary internal sarcoma) and don't think it falls in the lung cancer category. Please don't worry about the steroids, they are the least of your friend's problems right now.

    May I suggest going to Onctalk.com where there is a lung cancer specialist who might be able to clarify this cancer for you.

    Many hugs for good success with the radiation treatment.

    PBJ
    Husband diagnosed with NSCLC Stage IV in 3/2005. Fought & lived over 2 1/2 years with multiple lines of treatment.

    Post describing our journey: http://cancerforums.net/viewtopic.ph...er=asc&start=0

    Left my embrace to live with our Heavenly Father in October of 2007 and now breathes with ease forever. I will miss this gentle, giving soul with the easy smile for the rest of my days, but have faith we will be together again. He's just getting a little break from me!

  4. #4
    Quote Originally Posted by pbj11
    Kate,

    I'm sorry for such a shocking discovery for your friend. I have never heard of this cancer (pulmonary internal sarcoma) and don't think it falls in the lung cancer category. Please don't worry about the steroids, they are the least of your friend's problems right now.

    May I suggest going to Onctalk.com where there is a lung cancer specialist who might be able to clarify this cancer for you.

    Many hugs for good success with the radiation treatment.

    PBJ
    Thank you for the information, i will check that website out
    be well kate

 

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