Lung cancer is one of the most common types of cancer that affects the lungs. Lung cancer can occur in anyone, but it is more prevalent in smokers and people who have been exposed to second-hand smoke or environmental pollutants.
American Lung Association states that according to the 2022 State of Lung Cancer Report, only 26% of lung cancer cases are diagnosed at an early stage when the five-year survival rate is much higher (61%).
Medical tourism platforms like Medditour connects the patients with lung cancer to best treatments abroad and with facilitators who will be able to facilitate the patients in getting a comfortable treatment, thus making the treatment affordable without any delay in time for the treatment.
This article will discuss the causes, symptoms, diagnosis, and treatment options for lung cancer. Additionally, we will explore how medical tourism can help people who are affected by lung cancer.
Causes of Lung Cancer
The primary cause of lung cancer is smoking, which is responsible for about 85% of all lung cancer cases. When you smoke, you inhale toxic chemicals, which damage the cells in your lungs. Over time, these damaged cells can become cancerous.
Exposure to second-hand smoke, also known as passive smoking, can also increase your risk of developing lung cancer. Other factors that can contribute to lung cancer include exposure to environmental pollutants such as radon, asbestos, and air pollution. Cancer is also caused due to hereditary reasons.
Symptoms of Lung Cancer
The symptoms of lung cancer can vary from person to person, and they may not appear until the cancer has advanced. Symptoms can be,
- Cough which is prevalent for a long time
- Shortness of breath or difficulty breathing
- Chest pain that while breathing or coughing
- Unexplained weight loss
- Loss of appetite
- Coughing up blood or rust-colored sputum
If you experience any of these symptoms, it is essential to speak to your doctor immediately.
Diagnosis of Lung Cancer
To diagnose lung cancer, your doctor may perform several tests, including:
- Imaging tests such like x-rays and scans
- Sputum cytology, which involves analyzing the phlegm you cough up for cancer cells
- Biopsy, where a small sample of tissue is taken from the lungs and examined under a microscope to check for cancer cells
Treatment of Lung Cancer
The treatment of lung cancer depends on the type of lung cancer you have, its stage, and your overall health. Treatments include,
- Surgery – removes the malignant tumor and the tissues surrounding the tumor
- Radiation therapy – cancer cells are killed using high energy radiation treatment
- Chemotherapy – cancer cells are killed using medications
- Targeted therapy – uses drugs to target specific proteins or genes that help cancer cells grow, thus blocking the cancer cells
Treatments are given in combination with the advice of the doctors, if required. Cancer.Net states that for patients who have small, early-stage lung cancer, the cure rate can be as high as 80% to 90%.
Medical tourism and lung cancer treatments
Firstly, medical tourism can provide access to specialized treatments and facilities that may not be available in your home country. For example, some countries may have more advanced technologies and treatments for lung cancer than others.
Secondly, medical tourism can provide cost savings for people with lung cancer. The cost of cancer treatment can be high, and medical tourism can provide access to more affordable treatments in other countries. Additionally, some countries offer medical tourism packages that include transportation, accommodation, and treatment, which can provide significant cost savings. Medical tourism companies like Medditour help in availing these packages by connecting the patients with the facilitators so that they can have their medical treatments at the favorable medical tourism destinations like India, Malaysia, Singapore, Thailand, Dubai, and Turkey where the treatments are affordable.
Finally, medical tourism can provide access to medical professionals who specialize in the treatment of lung cancer. By traveling to another country, you can access doctors and specialists who have extensive experience in treating lung cancer.
In conclusion, lung cancer is a significant health concern that affects millions of people worldwide. While smoking is the primary cause of lung cancer, other factors such as environmental pollutants and genetic factors can also contribute to its development. Wide range of treatments are available for curing lung cancer and medical tourism could be a good option for getting cost-effective treatment for lung cancer without compromising on quality.