Lung Cancer in Women: The Differences in Epidemiology, Biology and Treatment Outcomes

Maria Patricia Rivera


Expert Rev Resp Med. 2009;3(6):627-634. 

In This Article

Histologic Distribution of Lung Cancer in Women

Male and female smokers differ in the histologic types of lung cancer with which they are diagnosed; women are more likely to develop adenocarcinoma, whereas squamous cell carcinoma is more common in men.[6,55,56] This difference in histology has been attributed to differences in the tar content of the cigarettes men and women smoke and their mode of inhalation.[57,58] Emerging data suggests that bronchioloalveolar carcinoma is a distinct clinical-pathologic entity. Clinically, bronchioloalveolar carcinoma is more common in younger female nonsmokers and tends to progress more indolently than other NSCLCs.[59,60] Results of several case–control studies have shown that women who smoke have higher ORs for developing small-cell carcinoma than squamous cell carcinoma.[9,55,61]


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