Symptoms and Signs of Carcinoid Lung Tumors

Medical Author: John P. Cunha, DO, FACOEP
Medically Reviewed on 3/11/2019

Doctor's Notes on Carcinoid Lung Tumors

Carcinoid tumors are tumors that tend to grow so slowly that people who have them usually live for many years after diagnosis (sometimes a normal lifespan). Carcinoid lung tumors are a rare group of lung tumors that develop from neuroendocrine cells. Most carcinoid tumors originate in the small intestine, about 10% begin in the lung.

About one-quarter of patients with carcinoid lung tumors have no symptoms when the tumors are found. Symptoms of carcinoid lung tumors include cough that does not go away, coughing up blood, difficulty breathing, wheezing, and fever (due to infection in the lung). Symptoms of carcinoid syndrome that may indicate the presence of carcinoid lung tumors include facial flushing, sweating, diarrhea, fast heartbeat, weight gain, increased facial and body hair, and increased skin pigmentation. Rarely, carcinoid lung tumors become malignant (spread) and symptoms may include weight loss, weakness, and a general feeling of ill health.

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REFERENCE:

Kasper, D.L., et al., eds. Harrison's Principles of Internal Medicine, 19th Ed. United States: McGraw-Hill Education, 2015.