A Closer Look at the Different Types of Lung Cancer

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Getting a lung cancer diagnosis can be surprising, but understanding your condition can help you feel more in control and make decisions about your care. At Regional Medical Center of San Jose, our Pulmonology-Interventional department provides diagnosis and treatment for all types of lung cancer, and our expert staff of oncologists is always willing to answer patients’ questions. There are three types of lung cancer. Here is what you need to know about each.

Non-Small Cell Lung Cancer

Non-small cell lung cancer accounts for about 85 percent of lung cancer cases. Subtypes of non-small cell lung cancer include adenocarcinoma and squamous cell carcinoma. Signs of this type of lung cancer include a persistent cough, chest pain when coughing or laughing, coughing up blood, and unexplained weight loss. If the cancer spreads, patients may also experience bone pain or neurological changes. Treatment options include surgery, radiation, and chemotherapy.

Small Cell Lung Cancer

Sometimes referred to as oat cell cancer, small cell cancer makes up 10 to 15 percent of cases. The symptoms of small cell cancer are similar to those of non-small cell cancer, however, small cell cancer usually spreads very quickly and has often infected distant organs when it is diagnosed. Chemotherapy is the most common treatment for this kind of cancer. Radiation therapy may also be used, but surgery for small cell lung cancer is rare.

Lung Carcinoid Tumors

Lung carcinoid tumors are the most rare type of lung cancer, accounting for only five percent of cases. Your doctor may also refer to this type of cancer as lung neoendocrine tumors. This type of lung cancer grows slowly and usually doesn’t spread to other parts of the body. Symptoms include coughing, wheezing, and shortness of breath. Surgery and chemotherapy are common treatments.

Lung cancer patients can find compassionate care and cutting-edge treatments at Regional Medical Center of San Jose. In addition to quality cancer care, our hospital in San Jose is home to urgent care, stroke care , and robotic surgery. Learn more about our services by calling (408) 259-4000. 

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