Lung Cancer: Epidemiology, Causes and Treatment

Lung cancer is the most common cause of death when it comes to cancer-related deaths. The two types of cancer are small-cell lung carcinoma and non-small-cell lung carcinoma. Small-cell lung cancer is linked with a poor prognosis due to rapid growth and early distant and loco-reginal dissemination. Non-small cell lung cancer is associated with people who smoke. It also makes up for 85% of people who have lung cancer. Some of the most common causes of lung cancer include the use of drugs such as tobacco and even secondhand smoke.Other factors include air pollution and exposure to harmful chemicals. The most common forms of treatment include surgery, medication drugs, chemotherapy, and radiation therapy. However, some methods are more effective than others. Different types of lung cancer require different methods of treatment.To begin with, there are many causes of lung cancer. Cigarettes contain tobacco which can cause lung cancer. A study proved that lung cancer was seen in former smokers rather than current smokers.A study also showed that secondhand smoke during childhood increased the risk of lung cancer in adulthood. Furthermore, meats such as cured pork and sausage, chili, and deep-fried cooking have been linked to a risk of lung cancer. Those who drink 30g/d of alcohol are at a greater risk of lung cancer than those who don’t drink. There are also certain genes found in humans that can increase the risk of lung cancer. For example, individuals who were carries of TP53 were found at a greater risk for lung cancer.One of the treatments that is said to be the most successful to treat lung cancer is surgery. Surgical resection is what works best but it also has a relapse rate of 40%. However, in order for this treatment to be effective, cancer must be resectable and the individual should be able to endure the process of the surgery. Depending on the type of lung cancer will determine which treatment is best. For non-small cell lung cancer, radiation therapy is required because of all the medication presented to the individual. Another form of therapy is chemotherapy. Chemotherapy is the best method for palliation in individuals that have metastatic disease. Another way to prevent lung cancer is by an early diagnosis. In order to increase the chances of survival for lung cancer, the treatment as well as the age, stage, and early diagnoses all play a factor.A technique called cold atmospheric plasma was found as a treatment of cancer. The results from a study showed that CAP fought the lung cancer cells and inhibited cell proliferation. This technique is said to kill lung cancer cells without damaging the healthy cells. In addition, thoracic radiotherapy is one of the common ways to treat lung cancer. However, this method is said to have risks rather than the other methods provided. Thoracic radiotherapy causes radiation pneumonitis. It also causes radiation-induced pulmonary fibrosis.There’s a certain method that treats those suffering from small-cell lung cancer. This method is called prophylactic cranial irradiation which reduces the occurrence of symptomatic brain metastases which many individuals suffering from small-cell lung cancer develop. As said earlier, chemotherapy and radiotherapy are used for those who are diagnosed will small-cell lung cancer.Sometimes not all treatments work which results in the use of other treatments. For instance, chemotherapy failure causes drug resistance. However, pharmacogenomics studies have begun defining multiple gene variations that are responsible for assorted drug metabolisms. The glutathione metabolic pathway is involved in the detoxification of platinum-based compounds which is the most commonly used drug in lung cancer treatment. Furthermore, DNA repair is another mechanics of resistance to platinum-based chemotherapy. Another treatment used for lung cancer is ionizing radiation. This treatment acts on DNA. It causes double-strand and single-strand breaks and base lesions, particularly double-stranded DNA breaks. This is repaired using two pathways. These pathways are known as homologous recombination and non-homologous end-joining.Overall lung cancer is the most common cause of death amongst cancer-related deaths. While there are different types of lung cancer, non-small cell lung cancer counts for most lung cancer. Although there are different treatments that all have the same goal, some are more beneficial than others such as the surgery method. However, not all of them guarantee survival, as some have up to a five-year survival rate. The different types of lung cancer and the treatments taken will determine the outcome of the individual.