St. Helena Lung Cancer Treatment

We provide holistic, personalized care

When smoking was linked to lung cancer, awareness of the disease spread throughout the country. Though we are now aware of the dangers of smoking and lung cancer, it still remains the No. 1 cause of cancer deaths in the United States. At the Martin-O’Neil Cancer Center, we are committed to giving our patients a fighting chance against this disease and helping them live as comfortably as possible.

Symptom and possible causes of lung cancer

Smoking and exposure to secondhand smoke are the primary causes of lung cancer. Cigarette smoke is full of carcinogens that damage the lungs every time they are exposed to it. The body can repair this damage in the beginning, but over time it’s ability to recover weakens.

Possible symptoms of lung cancer include:

  • Severe and chronic coughing
  • Hoarseness
  • Aches and pains
  • Headache
  • Chest pain
  • Unexplained weight loss
  • Shortness of breath
  • Coughing up blood

Unfortunately, even people who have never smoked or been exposed to secondhand smoke can still develop lung cancer. Sometimes this is caused by exposure to asbestos, a dangerous substance that causes a deadly form of lung cancer, mesothelioma. Other times the cause is unknown.

Creating your care plan

There are several possible surgeries that can be performed to treat lung cancer if it has not yet spread. In the earliest stages, only a small portion of the lung may need to be removed in a wedge resection procedure. In severe cases, a pneumonectomy may be recommended to remove the entire lung.

Aside from surgery, targeted therapy, radiation therapy and chemotherapy are all treatments that can help kill cancer cells. Many patients enter palliative care for assistance with treating the symptoms like coughing, fatigue and weakness.