Lung Nodules

Friday, March 11, 2016

Lung nodulessmall masses of tissue in the lungare quite common. Though most are non-cancerous, they can be cancerous. Dr. Edward Hill tells us more about lung nodules in todays 60 Second Housecall.

Dr. Hill:

A lung nodule is a small, ball-shaped mass that can grow in the lung. It can range in size from smaller than a pea to the size of a golf ball or larger. Your doctor can see it on a chest x-ray or CT scan. Most of the time, there are no symptoms.

Most nodules are benign, which means not cancer. Infectious granulomas are the most common cause of benign nodules. Granulomas are formed when a group of immune cells in your body tries to fight an infection. A lung nodule can also be malignant.

Patients who smoke or have smoked in the past, who are older than 40 years and who have other types of cancers are at higher risk of getting lung cancer.

Your doctor may send you to a lung or cancer specialist if your nodule is growing since it may be malignant. The specialist might do a biopsy, which is when a doctor takes out a small piece of lung tissue to see if it is cancer.

For North Mississippi Medical Center, Im Dr. Edward Hill.