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Lung cancer symptoms

Lung cancer symptoms depend on the localization of a malignant tumor, its size and stage of the process. The cancerous cells can be localized centrally (in the large Central bronchi) and peripherally (in the tissue of the lung, small bronchi). A malignant tumor has four degrees of development. To detect signs of lung cancer on the first and second stages is problematic. And the progression of the tumor and appearance of metastases on the third and fourth stage appears pronounced.

The first symptoms of lung cancer

How does lung cancer at the initial stage? Unfortunately, the vast majority of patients the disease is found incidentally, during physical examination. Moreover, to identify the tumor in the early stages of development very difficult. Therefore, to know what signs point to lung cancer is important not only medical workers, but also the common man. How to recognize lung cancer?

The presence of the following symptoms should be alerted:

  • Out of nowhere appeared and unfading hoarseness. This occurs as a result of the innervation of the muscles of the vocal apparatus: a growing tumor compressing the recurrent laryngeal nerve.
  • Chronic cough for lung cancer – the most common symptom. Cough, usually dry, without sputum. With the growth of tumors in the later stages of development can be allocated purulent mucus or to move away sputum with blood (hemoptysis).
  • Whistling sound in the breathing process. This suggests that the tumor is actively introduced into lung tissue.
  • Pain in the chest. Especially it is felt when you inhale. Indicates that the tumor invades the pleura.
  • Constant shortness of breath, difficult to breath. Evidence processes atelectasis – collapsed lumen of the alveoli.
  • Subfebrilitet, manifested in the evening. It's fever in lung cancer, not associated with other inflammatory processes in the body.

As can be seen from the list of symptoms already during the growth of the tumor. At the beginning of his development of lung cancer may be asymptomatic.

What are the symptoms for lung cancer in the later stages?

Developing, a malignant tumor penetrates into adjacent organs and tissues, damages the lymph nodes. Clinical manifestations become more vivid and recognizable:

  • Pain arising in the shoulder area and extending on the outer side of the hand (connected with the nerve damage).
  • Paralysis of the vocal cords, causing hoarseness.
  • Swallowing disorder associated with the infiltration of malignant tumors in the wall of the esophagus.
  • A lung abscess that occurs when the large overlap of the respiratory tract.
  • Severe pain in the individual organs with distant metastasis.
  • Swollen lymph nodes (often in the supraclavicular region).

So may manifest lung cancer 4 stage.

Nonspecific symptoms that can occur with other types of cancer:

  • dramatic weight loss;
  • weakness;
  • fatigue;
  • depression and mood swings.

As a rapidly developing lung cancer? It depends on the type and timely treatment.

It should be noted that there are specific symptoms that indicate a malignant tumor in the lungs. None of the above signs does not allow with certainty to the diagnosis. Almost all symptoms can be attributed to clinical manifestations and other diseases.

Causes of lung cancer


    2)Genetic predisposition. If close relatives have cancer, the risk of malignant tumors increases.
    3)Environmental problems. Accommodation in highly industrial areas, where a strong dust content of air, the accumulation of exhaust gases significantly increases the risk of developing cancer. This group can be attributed to radiation, long term regular presence in the company of smokers (often for this reason, developing lung cancer in children), contact with poisonous substances (arsenic, asbestos, Nickel, chromium, etc.), conditioned by professional activity, working in the coal mine and more.
    4)Chronic lung disease. For example, concomitant tuberculosis significantly increases the risk of cancer.

Types of lung cancer

There are several classifications of lung cancer.

      1.Depending on the type of cancer cells:
    • small cell lung cancer (the most aggressive malignant tumors with a low survival rate; often occurs in hard-core smokers; symptoms of small cell lung cancer is associated with rapid disease progression and metastasis);
    • non-small cell lung cancer (develops more slowly but far more common; distinguish between squamous cell and large-cell carcinoma and shape, as well as adenocarcinoma).
      2. Depending on localization of a malignant tumor:
    • Central (located in large bronchi; characterized by the first signs lung cancer of this type occur earlier);
    • peripheral (located on the periphery of the lung, small bronchi for a long time asymptomatic, often detected incidentally, during the passage of prophylactic medical examination.

Diagnosis of lung cancer

Diagnostic testing should be for all people, especially those at risk (smokers, with a "bad" heredity). As a rule, all adults once a year doing chest x-rays. If the picture changes detected in the lungs, is assigned an additional examination. But the chest x-ray is uninformative method of diagnosis of lung cancer. How to identify lung cancer? Main methods:

  • x-ray (shows the structure of the lungs, suspicious stains, displacement of organs, swollen lymph nodes, etc.);
  • computed tomography (detects even small tumors that are not visible on the radiograph);
  • bronchoscopy allows biopsy of tumor tissue);
  • needle biopsy (through the skin to study tumor in small bronchi);
  • a common blood test for lung cancer (in the initial period changes are not visible, can later be detected eosinophilia and leukocytosis).

The most informative method is a biopsy.