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New Test May Reveal An Otherwise Undectable Sign Of Lung Cancer
Early detection improves chances of survival in lung cancer patients. So any form of detection that can amplify a sign of lung cancer can lead to earlier treatment and better success of eradication.
British scientists are developing a "breathalyzer" which may revolutionize the detection of lung cancer in its early stages. The device works by detecting ethane, which is released by cancerous cells in the lungs and is sensitive to one part per billion. The technology for this early detection device was developed for oil prospecting.
Dr Kenneth Skeldon, of the University of Glasgow, said "Early detection and monitoring of cancer and other serious diseases hugely improves the effectiveness of treatment and the possibility of cure. People can produce a higher trace of ethane in their breath when cancer strikes."
Lung cancer has very low survival rates, making early detection of any sign of lung cancer big news. Only about 5% of people who get lung cancer live for more than five years after it is diagnosed. The main reason lung cancer has such a low survival rate is that it has been so difficult to detect in early stages.
What are the causes of Lung Cancer?
As much as 80% of lung cancer occurs in active or ex-smokers and an additional 5% of cases are estimated to occur because of passive exposure to tobacco smoke. Exposure to asbestos or radon are also risk factors, through not as common.
How serious is Lung Cancer?
Lung cancer is the leading cause of cancer death for both men and women and the incidence continues to grow worldwide. It is responsible for more deaths than breast and prostate cancer combined.
How is Lung Cancer treated?
Treatment depends on the size, type and stage of the tumor and on your own personal health. In general, there are three types of treatment used in the management of lung cancer:
Surgery: Removing the tumor by surgery is the most common form of treatment for non-small cell lung cancer, if the cancer has not spread. If the cancer has spread and surgery is not possible, radiation therapy and chemotherapy are used to control symptoms by reducing the size of the tumor.
Radiation Therapy: is a general term for the treatment of cancer using x-rays. It is done by directing high-energy beams at the areas of the lung that need treatment. Radiotherapy works by killing cancerous cells and can be used either on its own or in combination with surgery and/or chemotherapy. Improvements in Radiation Therapy technology involves
Chemotherapy: is the general term for the treatment of cancer using drugs. The drugs that are used are designed to kill off cancer cells while causing less damage to normal cells. There are many different types of chemotherapy drugs which can be used on their own or, more commonly, in combinations.
Some dietary factors are also being studied in how they may impact the survivability of lung cancer. However, no form of nutrition provides for a "proven treatment" for any cancer. Because of this, diet should be considered an important complementary aspect to standard therapy, but should not be viewed as an alternative cancer cure. As a form of complementary care, many case studies have been written showing improvement to quality of life during standard care. When we consider the typical diet consumed by people prior to dealing with cancer, a diet of fresh, whole, unprocessed foods is likely to provide benefit to anyone. If you are dealing with cancer, consult with your doctor or a trained nutrition professional to determine what improvements you may make in your diet and support the nourishment needs of the cells.
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