Kelly Cooper 1Small squamous Cell Cancer Intro to Human DiseasesInstructor: Dr. Leigh Harrell Written by: Kelly Cooper Due: 06/06/2012
Kelly Cooper 2 Small cell lung cancer is a very fast-growing cancer of lung and is more aggressive atspreading then the non-small cell lung cancer. In the lung cancer cases only about 15% areSmall cell lung cancer. Small cell lung cancer has 3 different types which are: Small cellcarcinoma, mixed small cell/large cell carcinoma, and combined small cell carcinoma. Smallcell lung cancer is seen a bit more in men than in women and most cases are due to smokingcigarettes.According toDugdale (2012), “Commonly the small cell lung cancer starts in thebronchi in the center of the chest, which metastasize throughout the body, normally the brain,liver, and bone are the ones most affected by small cell lung cancer”. A patient that has this disease will show symptoms like bloody sputum, chest pain,coughing, loss of appetite, shortness of breath, weight loss, wheezing, facial swelling, fever,hoarseness or changing in the vocal chords, swallowing difficulty, and weakness and fatigue.The patient must be seen by their primary care physician as soon as possible so tests can beperformed to diagnose properly and to treat aggressively if this is possible with the patient. The tests that help us detect this disease and know what stage the patient is dealing withinclude: bone scan, chest x-ray, complete blood count, CT scan, liver function tests, MRI, PETscan, Sputum test, Thoracentesis (removal of fluid from the chest cavity around the lungs),bronchoscopy combined with biopsy, CT scan-directed needle biopsy, Endoscopic esophagealultrasound with biopsy, Open lung biopsy, and aPlueral biopsy. They have many different waysof testing due to individual patient health risks. Some patients may be more susceptible toinfection and higher risks and lack of healing like my mother. My mother ended up losing herbattle withsmall cell lung carcinoma due to onset of pneumonia on February 1st 2011.
Kelly Cooper 3 Treatment of the SCLC is necessary and imperative to start immediately due to how fastthis disease spreads throughout the body. Time is not on the patient’s side when the diagnosis isSCLC. The treatments that are available to patient’s is Chemotherapy, radiation, and if at allpossible surgery. Surgery only helps very few SCLC patients because this disease normally hasalready spread to other parts of the body or the patient is not in good health to even qualify forsurgery. Small cell lung cancer obviously weakens the lungs in which if a patient undergoessurgery the lungs could collapse or even possibly the surgery could damage the lungs creatingholes that will not be able to be repaired causing death. Radiation therapy is powerful x-rays thatare aimed directly at the cancer cells and kills the cancer cells or at least is able to shrink thecancer cells. The downside to this is our normal cells at times are also damaged or killed off bythe radiation treatment making the patient weaker and vulnerable or more prone to infections dueto a low immune system. Chemotherapy is a type of drug that is injected into the body or maybe taken orally by mouth. Two types of chemotherapy drugs used for small cell lung cancer areetoposide or irinotecan combined with either ciplatin or crboplatin to be most effective and toattack the cancer cells hard. According to ACS (2009),“Sometimes if the patient is healthyenough to receive chemotherapy and radiation at the same time then the patient has a betterchance of survival and less cancer cells to worry about in the body or spreading throughout thebody”. The overall prognosis with this disease is not positive one at all. Only 6% of people thatare diagnosed with Small squamous cell lung carcinoma or any small cell lung cancer are aliveafter 5 years of diagnosis. According to NIH (2010),“The treatments that the patients go throughhelp them stretch their lifespan out to about six months or maybe even a year from the time theywere diagnosed, but that is not even guaranteed or promised”.
Kelly Cooper 4 The Small squamous cell lung carcinoma is due to smoking cigarettes and second handsmoking. This cancer is obviously preventable and I strongly advise everyone to take the properprecautionary measures to ensure a long healthy life and think of not only yourself but yourfamily members as well. According to Cancerhelp (2011)“The cancer attacks and weakens yourcells and gives your body no real hope of recovery and the overall prognosis of lung cancer andliving is only 2 to 5%”. The odds are not in anyone’s favor so please take heed to this warning. The reason I am doing my research on Small squamous cell lung carcinoma is becausethis disease took my mother’s life on February 1st 2011. She was diagnosed on March 20th 2010and started radiation immediately. Even though our medical advances are so amazing andastounding the modern medicine could not save my mother’s life. This cancer is fast, horrifyingto watch someone die from and the most disheartening is that it is preventable. References
Kelly Cooper 5Dugdale, D. (2004, 22 03).Medline plus. Retrieved from http://www.nlm.nih.gov/medlineplus/ency/article/000122.htm(2009). Retrieved from http://www.americancancersociety.org/2009 (2011). Retrieved from http://www.cancerhelp.cancerresearchuk.org/type/lung-cancer/about/types-of-lung- cancer(2011). Retrieved from http://www.cancerhelp.cancerresearchuk.org/type/lung- cancer/about/types-of-lung-cancer