AFIP / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY AFIP / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
False-colour X-ray showing the spread of lung cancer (front view of chest). This enhanced image colours the lungs a blue/green inside the ribcage. Both lungs are cancerous: the tumours showing up red with a fibrous white growth. The heart is coloured light blue (at lower centre). Lung cancer is one of the most malignant of tumours; in most cases associated with cigarette smoking. Secondary malignant tumours which have spread from other parts of the body to the lungs, are also common. To confirm this X-ray diagnosis it is necessary to examine lung tissue for the presence of cancer cells. The simplest test is on samples of phlegm; otherwise a biopsy is performed.
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