Lung metastases

Cancer cells can dislodge from the original tumour and spread to the lungs via the blood or lymphatic channels where they continue to grow.

Overview

Cancer cells can dislodge from the original tumour and spread to the lungs via the blood or lymphatic channels where they continue to grow. These tumours are called lung metastases. They can remain unnoticed, or can cause symptoms such as shortness of breath, pneumonia or coughing. Possible therapies include chemotherapy, radiation or surgery.

Symptoms

Causes and treatment

Causes

Tumours are cells that multiply uncontrollably. Individual cells that dislodge from a tumour and travel to another organ are called metastases. Some tumours often spread to the lungs:

Further treatment by your doctor / in hospital

Possible tests
  • X-ray
  • CT scan (computed tomography)
  • Bronchoscopy
Possible therapies
  • Removal of fluid from the chest (pleural tap)
  • Radiation therapy
  • Chemotherapy
  • Operation

When to see a doctor?

  • Constant hoarseness or coughing but no infection
  • Bloody phlegm
  • Shortness of breath, feeling of suffocation, anxiety
  • Constant chest pain

This applies in particular to people who are known to have cancer.

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CSS offers no guarantee for the accuracy and completeness of the information. The information published is no substitute for professional advice from a doctor or pharmacist.

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