About Lung Cancer

Lung and Cancer

The lungs are a pair of sponge-like organs located in your chest. They are part of your respiratory system. They bring in (inhale) air to the body and push it out (exhale). This is how we take in oxygen and get rid of carbon dioxide, which is a waste product. The right lung has three lobes and the left lung has two lobes. The lining around the lung is called the pleura that helps protect the lung and allows it to move when you breathe. The trachea (windpipe) brings air down into the lungs. It divides into tubes call bronchi which further divide into smaller tubes called bronchioles. At the end of these small braches are tiny air sacs called the alveoli.

Cancer Cells:
Normally, healthy cells grow and divide to form new cells as the body needs them. When normal cells grow old or get damaged, they die and new cells are formed to take their place. Sometimes when this orderly process goes wrong, new cells develop when the body does not need them and old or damaged cells do not die as they should. Extra cells form a mass of tissue called a tumor. Tumor cells can be benign (not cancer) or malignant (cancer).
Lymphatic System:

Lymphatic system carries lymph, which is a fluid that contains tissues waste products and immune system cells. Cancer cells may enter lymph vessels and spread out to reach lymph nodes. The lymphatic vessels of the lungs lead to the lymph nodes inside the chest that is located around the bronchi and in the mediastinum (area between the lung). Lymph nodes are small and bean-shaped. Their role is the collecting of immune stem cells that are important in fighting infections. When lung cancer cells reach the lymph nodes they can continue to grow and are more likely to spread to other organs.

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