Lung cancer, bronchial carcinoma – course of disease
Lung cancer often occurs from the cells of the mucous membrane in the bronchi or from the lung tissue. As the growth progresses, the tumor can spread from one lung wing to the other, depending on the location, and / or can be affected by lymph nodes or tissue in the surrounding area (eg chest wall or diaphragm). Some cancer cells ultimately reach the organs and tissues in other parts of the body via blood and lymphatic pathways, where they grow to daughter tumors (metastases).
The course of the disease depends decisively on which form of the lung cancer the patient is affected and at what stage the disease was discovered.
Small-cell lung carcinomas differ from non-small-cell lung carcinomas not only in their fine-bodied structure, but also in the growth and spread behavior. The small-cell lung carcinoma grows very quickly and spreads rapidly over the blood pathway and the lymphatic pathways into the lung, skeleton, bone marrow, liver and brain. The non-small-cell lung carcinomas – including squamous cell carcinoma, adenocarcinoma and large-cell lung carcinoma – grow and metastasize more slowly compared to the small-cell lung carcinoma. In the case of late-discovered lung tumors, a relapse may occur during the following years after cancer treatment. This means that the tumor can recur in the lungs, but also in other body regions (recurrence).
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