Prognosis for small cell lung cancer is no good news. Having it means you have aggressive malignant (cancer) cells in the tissues of your lung. Unless stopped, these cancerous cells will spread and destroy your healthy cells. Lung cancer is the leading cause of death affecting hundreds of thousands of men and women. Only 5% of those found afflicted managed to survive within a five year study period. The 95% did not make it despite radiation, chemotherapy or surgery. The other type of lung cancer is the non-small cell. This one is categorized into 3 sub-types, the squamous or epidermoid carcinoma, the adnocarcinoma and the large cell carcinoma or anaplastic. All three have low survival rates.
How far the small cell cancer has spread is determined by means of staging. Your treatment will be planned and implemented based on the stage of the disease. One way of finding out is by the clinical staging system which is based on the results of imaging tests such as the CT scan, MRI, chest x-ray, PET scan, biopsies and physical exam. If you underwent surgery, your doctor can discern based on a pathologic stage. You may have already heard or are aware of stage 1,2,3,4 in describing cancer. This is the TNM staging system which uses roman numerals 0 to IV (4) to describe the growth and spread of lung cancer. Under this system, the higher the number, the more serious is the spread of the cancer.
With the small lung cancer or oat cell, it can either be limited or extensive. Since diagnosis of this disease is usually detected when the cancer has already spread, majority of people have the extensive type. What it means is that the cancerous cells have invaded other parts of the body to include even the brain. Survival outlook or prognosis for small cell lung cancer is bad news for most of the cancer victims. According to the NCI’s statistics, survival rate is very low for all stages of people with small cell lung cancer.
There are many stories of people who lost hope, went into depression and self blame after being diagnosed of lung cancer. They blamed their condition to smoking addiction. Aside from tobacco smoking, medical findings conclude other causes such as pollution, exposure to dangerous chemicals like asbestos, uranium, radon, etc. Your lungs are responsible for bringing oxygen into the body as you inhale and take out carbon dioxide as you exhale. When your lungs get affected with lung cancer, you experience shortness of breath, chest pain, etc.
How do you cope up with life as a cancer fighting survivor? There are many ways that you can fight it out if this will be your posture. Your belief, self-confidence, determination to wage a battle against your adversary and strong faith in whatever is the Creator’s will is very important. So, first thing you need to do is know the weakness and strength of your enemy. You need to educate yourself about the intricacies of lung cancer, latest hi tech laser or cell treatments and alternative remedies. Try to research as many success stories you can find from all sources in the web through Google search, internet sites of cancer research organizations like American Cancer Society and National Cancer Institute.
You have to change your lifestyle. Get plenty of fresh air and sunshine, eat plenty of fruits, nuts and vegetables, and take lots of vitamins and natural nutritional supplements like maqui berry, pomegranates and green barley. Drink plenty of purified water every day, engage in regular moderate simple exercises, yoga and meditation. For your spiritual well being, commune and pray daily to your God.
Do this passionately with the support of your doctors, friends, relatives and loved ones. Despite the negative prognosis for small cell lung cancer, the lifestyle change can improve the quality of your life, and possibly even the victor. Join social networking cancer survivor clubs. There are more than 400,000 lung cancer survivors in the United States. Participate in forums and read blogs. In short, take an active stand and face your battle standing up with your own army of fighters and supporters from all over the world hoping, urging, encouraging, inspiring, motivating, pushing and praying for you to fight it out all the way win or lose! Believe that you will win!