The three main types of lung cancer are non-small cell lung cancer, small cell lung cancer and lung carcinoid tumor, according to the American Cancer Society. Non-small cell lung cancer has three subtypes, including squamous cell carcinoma, adenocarcinoma and large cell carcinoma.
Non-small cell lung cancer accounts for approximately 85 percent of all lung cancer cases, notes the American Cancer Society. Small cell lung cancer, which generally spreads very fast, is also called oat cell cancer. This type of cancer accounts for 10 to 15 percent of lung cancer cases. Lung carcinoid tumor cancer, which grows very slowly, is fairly rare and comprises 5 percent or less of lung cancer cases.