Lung cancer. Coloured X-ray of the chest of a patient with small cell lung cancer. The cancer is seen as tumours (orange, upper left) in the right lung. This is a carcinoma, an invasive malignant (cancerous) tumour derived from epithelial tissue. This is the most aggressive type of lung cancer and spreads (metastasises) to other parts of the lung and body early on in the illness. This is the limited stage of the cancer, as it has not spread outside of the chest. The main cause of small cell lung cancer is cigarette smoking. Symptoms include chest pain, shortness of breath and a cough. Treatment is usually with a combination of chemotherapy and radiotherapy, although prognosis is very poor.
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