About Lung Cancer


Treatment


Dr's Gorty and Rao with Trilogy Radiation Machine
The treatment options available to you depend on the type, location and stage of your lung cancer. Your health care team will also consider your age, general health, pre-existing diseases or conditions, and your ability to tolerate the side effects of treatment. It is important to know if you have been diagnosed with non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC) or small cell lung cancer (SCLC), because your treatment options will be different. It is also important to know the stage of your disease prior to treatment. Surgery, radiation therapy and chemotherapy are the primary tools for treating lung cancer. They can be used alone or in combination with each other, depending on the extent of the cancer to achieve more effective results.
 
Surgery
The goal is to remove the entire tumor, plus enough tissue that appears free of cancer around it to be reasonably sure that no cancer cells are left behind.
Types of surgery:
Wedge resection removes the tumor and some of the normal tissue around it Lobectomy removes the whole lobe A pneumonetomy removes the entire lung Surgery is more effective in early-stage non-small cell lung cancer when the tumor has not spread to lymph nodes or outside the chest cavity and it is small enough to be removed. Surgery is not indicated for advanced cancer that has spread to various areas of both lungs and/or other parts of the body.
 
Radiation Therapy
Radiation therapy is the use of a certain type of energy to kill cancer cells and shrink tumors. Radiation therapy injures or destroys cells in the area being treated. Our machine, Trilogy with Rapid Arc, is so sophisticated that only the tumor itself received the radiation, and surrounding tissues are spared, resulting in fewer side effects. The goal of radiation treatment is the complete destruction of an entire tumor. In other cases, the aim is to shrink a tumor and relieve symptoms. In either case, doctors plan treatment specific to your needs. To learn more about Radiation Oncology, click on the Oncology Services tab, and then Radiation Oncology.
 
Chemotherapy
Chemotherapy uses strong chemicals or drugs to kill cancer cells, stop their reproduction, or slow their growth. There are many kinds of chemotherapy drugs and they may be given in combination with each other, and also in combination with surgery and radiation. A medical oncologist will be coordinating these treatments with you.
 
Even though chemotherapy drugs may be administered intravenously, or taken orally in tablets, capsules, or liquid form, most chemotherapy for lung cancer is given intravenously. Chemotherapy is called systemic therapy because it treats the entire body, or system. Chemotherapy can kill cancer cells that have metastasized from the original tumor because it travels through the blood system to all parts of the body. The amount of chemotherapy a patient receives depends on the type of cancer, the drugs, and the patient’s overall response to treatment. This therapy may be given daily, weekly, or monthly and can continue for months or possibly years. Some drugs may be given in cycles, with rest periods between treatments to allow for the body to recover.
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