The treatment depends on the type of cancer and its stage. In the initial stages, it is very easy to cure cancer. There are many different types of treatments available for lung cancer. The treatments mentioned here can be opted for in combination or individually. The treatments which are usually undertaken for small cell cancer therapy are as follows:
- Radiation therapy
Chemotherapy is the most important treatment for small cell lung cancer. This cancer is also referred as oat- cell cancer. It is the most aggressive tumor which spreads to all parts of the body. This cancer corresponds well to the chemotherapy treatment.
In case of lung cancer, chemotherapy uses the cytotoxic (cell killing) medications to kill cancer cells or make them less active. Chemotherapy is used to treat small cell lung cancer because this cancer tends to spread beyond the lung when it is diagnosed. This treatment is either opted for after the surgery or relives the symptoms of the cancer in patients who cannot undergo surgery.
The chemotherapy drugs can reach these cancer cells anywhere in the body and also circulate in the blood stream. It is thus useful for treating the cancer cells that have spread to other parts of body and cannot be easily detected through scan. The drugs involved in chemotherapy are given either through a catheter placed in a large vein or by directly injecting into the vein.
However, for treating small cell lung cancer, surgery is usually avoided as this type of cancer has the tendency to spread quickly. In some cases, surgery is used to obtain the samples of tissues to determine the type of cancer present in the body.
The side effects of chemotherapy treatment largely depend on the dosage of the drugs and type of drugs that were used for the treatment. Majority of the side effects are temporary. Some common side effects of this treatment are fatigue, hair loss, vomiting, mouth sores and nausea.
This therapy affects both the normal cell and cancerous cells which results in unpleasant side effects in the body. This would basically help in early diagnosis and provide the essential treatment as soon as possible.
Apart from these, the follow up care is also required. The patient should undergo regular check-ups in order to find out any re-occurrence of the cancer, new cancer developing or any changes in the health.