Lung cancer is cancer that begins in the lungs, the two organs found in the chest that help you breathe. It is the number one cancer killer of men and women.
The lungs are made up of areas called lobes. The right lung has three lobes; the left lung has two, so there's room for the heart. When you breathe, air goes through your nose, down your windpipe (trachea), and into the lungs where it spreads through tubes called bronchi. Most lung cancer begins in the cells that line these tubes.
Smoking cessation is important to minimize one's risk of lung cancer. For help quitting, see Sentara's Tobacco Cessation Resource Guide or visit the American Cancer Society.
Two main types of lung cancer:
Non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC) is the most common type of lung cancer and is subdivided into several types adenocarcinoma, squamous cell carcinoma, large cell and bronchoalveolar.
Small cell lung cancer makes up about 20 percent of all lung cancer cases.
If the lung cancer is made up of more than one type, it is called mixed. Some patients may have a carcinoid tumor which is a cancer like growth of the lung.
If the cancer started somewhere else in the body and spread to the lungs, it is called metastatic cancer to the lung.
Learn more about lung cancer:
Screening and Diagnosis
Treatment and Care