Lung Cancer

It is the second most common form of cancer in the world. Every year approximately more than 2.2 million people are diagnosed with lung cancer.
What we know about lung cancer evolves day by day. In the past, lung cancer was considered to be associated with only smoking; but today, thanks to the advances in the scientific diagnosis and treatments, many subtypes of the lung cancer have been discovered and many other factors such as genetic mutations and exposure to environmental carcinogenic materials have been found to cause cancer development.

Lung cancer is one of the most common solid organ tumors and is the leading cause of cancer-related deaths worldwide. Every year approximately more than 2.2 million people are diagnosed with lung cancer. Lung cancer remains the most common cause of cancer-related deaths (18%) and accounts for 1 in every 5 deaths.

Cancer in the lungs results from the uncontrolled proliferation of abnormal cells. Although lung cancer often starts with a single focus in a lung, it can also develop from more than one focus. Cancer cells can spread to the lungs, neighboring tissues, or other parts of the body. The most common metastasis areas of lung cancer are lymph nodes, liver, central nervous system (brain), bone and adrenal glands. Lung cancer can also metastasize to different lobes or to the opposite lung.

Basically, it can be classified into two groups as small cell and non-small cell lung cancers. The most common symptoms are bloody cough, weight loss, shortness of breath, fatigue and chest pain, being mostly seen in the advanced and metastatic stage. 

  • Smoking

  • Occupational exposure (contact with asbestos, etc)

  • History of contact with radiation 

  • Genetic predisposition 

  • Diet

  • History of lung diseases

It is estimated that 80-90% of lung cancer mortality in men and 75-80% in women is due to smoking. It appears that 20 pack/years of smoking increases the risk of death from lung cancer 20-60 times in men and 14-20 times in women. Starting smoking before age 15 doubles the risk. The number of cigarettes smoked per day leads to a linear increase in risk; prolonged smoking time leads to an exponential increase in risk.

Approximately 85% of lung cancer patients initially present with regional or metastatic disease. 5-year survival times by disease type is 65% when lung cancer is diagnosed in the early (localized) stage, 37% in the regional stage, and only 9% in the distant (metastatic) stage. Therefore, early diagnosis of lung cancer is extremely critical.

The process in lung cancer starts with consultation to a pneumologist with any complaint and requires multidisciplinary work of many medical branches such as radiology, pathology, thoracic surgery, medical oncology and radiation oncology during the patient's journey.

While methods such as chest radiography (X-ray) are primarily used for imaging in diagnosis, imaging techniques such as Computed Tomography (CT), MRI (Magnetic Resonance Imaging) and PET (Positron Emission Tomography) are used for more detailed imaging and staging processes. By these methods, it is intended to determine the tumor size, lymph node involvement and whether there is metastasis to other organs.

Taking a tumor biopsy for histological subtyping and determining the definitive diagnosis is a critical process. With the biopsy sample taken, pathologists perform subtyping by examining the shapes of the cells under the microscope and images of the cells stained with special dyes. This histopathological diagnosis is of critical importance in determining the treatment process.

In recent years, with the development of targeted therapies, use of molecular diagnostic methods following histopathological diagnosis have gained great importance. 

In the treatment of lung cancer; surgery, chemotherapy, radiotherapy, immunotherapy, targeted drug therapy and/or palliative therapy can be administered alone or in combination. Factors affecting which treatment will be applied: The stage of the disease, the patient's performance status, the histopathological type of the tumor , mutation and biomarker analysis.

While lung cancer was a rare disease at the beginning of the current century, today it has become the deadliest cancer type in the world.

As Roche Türkiye, we prepared three different films for Lung Cancer Awareness Month in 2018-2020 with the slogan “Bak Ciğerim, Akciğerim” to draw attention to the risk factors and symptoms of lung cancer and launched a campaign to raise awareness of lung cancer in our society.

While drawing attention to the uniqueness of each lung cancer together with Kansersiz Yaşam Derneği with the motto of “Senin Hikayen Farklı/Your Story is Different” in 2021, we underlined the importance of early diagnosis and treatment with the slogan “Are You Ready to Write New Stories in Lung Cancer?” in cooperation with the Turkish Lung Cancer Society in 2022.

All campaign films are available onorwebsite.


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