Lung cancer of asbestos workers has increased greatly over the years. This is obviously due to the fact that the workers are exposed to the asbestos and breathe it in on a daily basis. This lung cancer (mesothelioma) is even more significant among the asbestos workers who smoke cigarettes.
Most lung cancer caused by excessive exposure to asbestos starts in the lining of the bronchi. The bronchi are the tubes in which the trachea or windpipe divide. It can also begin in other areas such as the alveoli, trachea, or bronchioles. The cancer usually develops slowly but once it occurs the cancer cells break away and then it spreads throughout various other body parts.
The most common places for people to breathe in asbestos is in mines, mills, factories, homes with asbestos, construction sites, during automotive repair, and pipefitting.
There are two major lung cancer types and they are:
– small cell lung cancer – The cancer cells are small and round.
– non-small cell lung cancer – The cancer cells are larger.
There have even been times when the cancer has a feature of both types. With small sell lung cancer the cells can multiply quickly and form large tumors. The tumors can then spread to the lymph nodes and to other various parts of the body.
There is treatment for asbestos lung cancer but it usually depends on the patient’s health and the type of lung cancer that they have. It also depends on the size, location, and the extent of the tumor.
The different types of treatments are surgery, chemotherapy, radiation, and photodynamic therapy.
The surgery is done to remove a part of the lung but it all depends on where the tumor is. It is a very serious procedure!
By using Chemotherapy, the cancerous cells are killed with drugs. Radiation works by destroying the cancer cells in the treated area. And lastly, the photodynamic therapy uses light to kill the cancerous cells. It is done by injecting a chemical into the bloodstream and is absorbed by the cells. The light then activates the chemical, destroying and killing off the cancerous cells.