Sarcomatoid carcinoma is a relatively uncommon form of cancer or malignant cells. As is the case with most cancers, the earlier the tumors are detected, the better the chances of survival. The average age of those diagnosed with sarcomatoid carcinoma of the lung is 65.
Sarcomatoid carcinoma is an extremely rare biphasic tumor that is a combination of malignant epithelial and mesenchymal tissue cells. It may be found in many locations around the body, including the bladder, colon, uterus, ovary, breast, and the lung -- epithelial cells line many of our internal surfaces. If you notice abnormal growths or marks on your body and have a family history of cancer, it is best to speak to a doctor.
People who smoke cigarettes, cigars, or pipes are at an increased risk of sarcomatoid carcinoma because of the damaging chemicals they inhale into their lungs. About 90 percent of diagnosed individuals are heavy tobacco smokers. Prolonged exposure to asbestos or electrical insulation can also be risk factors of this form of cancer.
Men should be especially wary of the risk factors for sarcomatoid carcinoma as they are four times as likely as women to be diagnosed with the disease. Doctors recommend men eat balanced diets with large quantities of antioxidants and omega-3 fatty acids and, of course, steer clear of smoking.
As with many diseases and illnesses, sarcomatoid carcinoma is not something that can be diagnosed with verbal confirmation of symptoms or the naked eye. A biopsy is the only test that can confirm sarcomatoid carcinoma. If your doctor diagnoses you with this type of cancer, he or she may need to run more tests, including a chest x-ray, CT scan, PET scan, MRI, bone scan, and a bone marrow biopsy.
Sarcomatoid carcinoma cannot be diagnosed from symptoms alone because the symptoms echo many other conditions. Coughing and fatigue are two of the most common signs of this type of cancer, but could also indicate a cold or the flu. However, a cough that brings up blood is a common sign that should alert the individual to a more serious issue. Other symptoms of sarcomatoid carcinoma include fever due to recurring pneumonia, weight loss, labored breathing, pain in the chest, and metastasis. Presence of more than one or two of these symptoms should prompt your doctor to order the biopsy that can definitively diagnose sarcomatoid carcinoma.
If you were to look at a picture of a sarcomatoid carcinoma, it looks like a mixture of carcinoma -- cancer that begins in the skin or in the tissues that line or cover internal organs in the body -- and sarcoma -- cancer of the bone, cartilage, fat, muscle, blood vessels, or other connective or supportive tissues.
From a treatment standpoint, the carcinoma part of this condition is easier to treat than the sarcoma part. Sarcomatoid carcinoma has a high recurrence rate, and it tends to lead to a poor prognosis in the long run. Each person is different, and no one can truly predict how the disease will affect a single individual.
Sarcomatoid carcinoma is a rare and aggressive form of cancer that does not care where it goes in the body. It can be unpredictable because it never affects two individuals, in the same way, making it difficult to determine a course of treatment. For this reason, the prognosis is usually poor.
The average age of diagnosis of a pulmonary sarcomatoid carcinoma is 65. Compared to other lung tumors, the pulmonary variety has the poorest prognosis, due to the limited success of chemotherapy. Again, it is hard to tell how this type of tumor will affect different people, as there is no singular course of treatment.
Sarcomatoid carcinoma is a rare, aggressive form of cancer with no proven course of treatment. It usually takes hold around age 65, and it has a high recurrence rate. Some types of this cancer do not respond well to chemotherapy. People with the disease need all the support they can get. Whether it is a shoulder to lean on, a home-cooked meal, or an ear to listen, a little support goes a long way.
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