Non-small cell lung cancer is the most common type of lung cancer, accounting for approximately 85% of all lung cancer cases. It is named “non-small cell” because the cancer cells are larger and appear different from small cell lung cancer cells under a microscope.
Here are some key characteristics and features of non-small cell lung cancer:
- Tumor Formation: NSCLC typically forms in the tissues of the lungs, primarily in the cells lining the airways (bronchi) and the outer parts of the lungs. It may develop as a single tumor or multiple tumors within the lung.
- Histological Subtypes: Non-small cell lung cancer encompasses several histological subtypes, including adenocarcinoma, squamous cell carcinoma, and large cell carcinoma. Each subtype has distinct cellular characteristics and growth patterns, which may impact treatment decisions and patient outcomes.
- Adenocarcinoma: This subtype often starts in the outer regions of the lungs and is commonly associated with smoking as well as non-smoking-related factors. Adenocarcinoma may appear as glandular structures or form solid masses.
- Squamous Cell Carcinoma: Squamous cell carcinoma usually arises in the central airways and is frequently linked to smoking. It tends to present as flat, thin cells with distinct cell borders.
- Large Cell Carcinoma: Large cell carcinoma is a less common subtype and can occur in any part of the lungs. It often exhibits a rapid growth pattern and lacks distinctive cellular features
3. Tumor Growth and Metastasis: Non-small cell lung cancer tumors can grow locally within the lungs, invade nearby tissues, and potentially spread (metastasize) to distant organs, such as the liver, bones, or brain. The extent of tumor growth and metastasis affects the stage of the cancer and influences treatment options.
Please keep in mind that the appearance and characteristics of non-small cell lung cancer can vary among individuals, and the information provided here is a general overview. For accurate visual representations of non-small cell lung cancer, it is recommended to consult medical textbooks, reputable online medical resources, or consult with a healthcare professional who can provide you with appropriate medical illustrations or imaging.