oat-cell carcinoma


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oat-cell carcinoma

A highly malignant form of lung cancer in which the cells are small, undifferentiated and rapidly spreading. About a quarter of lung cancers are oat-cell carcinomas. At the time of diagnosis the tumour is usually found to have spread remotely and the outlook is very poor. Cigarette smoking is the principle cause.
Collins Dictionary of Medicine © Robert M. Youngson 2004, 2005