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Non-small cell carcinoma and small cell carcinoma. What is the difference?

2 doctors weighed in
Dr. Joseph Woods
Pathology
1 doctor agrees

In brief: Small cell. all else

Small cell cancer of the lung is a specific kind of cancer that has uniform, small cells.
Non small cell cancer is the term for all other cancers that are in the lung, like adenocarcinoma, squamous cell cancer, and large cell cancer. These are grouped this way due to treatment approach. Small cell presents as widely disseminated and gets chemo., while non small cell is localized, gets surgery.

In brief: Small cell. all else

Small cell cancer of the lung is a specific kind of cancer that has uniform, small cells.
Non small cell cancer is the term for all other cancers that are in the lung, like adenocarcinoma, squamous cell cancer, and large cell cancer. These are grouped this way due to treatment approach. Small cell presents as widely disseminated and gets chemo., while non small cell is localized, gets surgery.
Dr. Joseph Woods
Dr. Joseph Woods
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