What Are Symptoms of Stage 4 Adenocarcinoma Lung Cancer?

In stage 4 adenocarcinoma lung cancer, a type of non-small-cell lung cancer, symptoms of the lung tumor include shortness of breath, chest pain, wheezing, hoarseness and coughing up blood, reports About.com. Patients may also experience weight loss, appetite loss, fatigue and recurring bouts of pneumonia. Symptoms of the cancer’s spread to other body areas include headaches, difficulty swallowing, jaundice, and back or hip pain.

Although people usually associate lung cancer with smoking, lung adenocarcinoma often afflicts nonsmokers who have been exposed to radon, points out About.com. Groups commonly diagnosed with lung adenocarcinoma include women, Asians and people under 45 years old. The disease may manifest minimal early symptoms that patients tend to overlook such as a slight shortness of breath, fatigue, and chest, shoulder and back aches. By the time doctors diagnose the disease in later stages, it is usually incurable but symptoms can be managed.

Treatment for lung adenocarcinoma diagnosed in stage 4 helps patients live longer, handle symptoms and have better quality of life, explains the American Cancer Society. It may include chemotherapy, radiation therapy, surgery and targeted therapy. The drugs that doctors choose for chemotherapy depend on where the cancer has spread and the patient’s overall state of health and propensity for bleeding. Other symptom-relieving options are laser therapy and photodynamic therapy. Patients manage pain with medication.