Many studies are done to determine the causes of lung cancer, and even more to create new lung cancer treatments. There are five basic ways on how to treat non-small cell lung cancer and are administered by a team of experts known as the multidisciplinary team. In this post, we look at the most common lung cancer treatment options: (1)
In this lung cancer treatment option, a surgical oncologist is the one that administers it. He or she is a doctor who specializes in cancer treatment. Furthermore, the main aim of surgery is to completely remove the lung tumor and the nearby lymph nodes in the chest. (2)
Here are some of the types of surgery that can treat non-small cell lung cancer:
- Pneumonectomy: It is carried out when the tumor is close to the center of the chest, and the entire lung may be removed.
- Segmentectomy: Surgeons perform this treatment when they cannot remove an entire lobe of the lung. The surgeon, therefore, removes only the portion of the lung where cancer developed.
- Lobectomy: This refers to the removal of the entire lobe of the lung. Surgeons believe that this is one of the most effective types of surgery; hence, they use it even in situations where the patient has a small lung.
- A wedge resection: In this kind of surgery, the doctor cannot remove the entire lobe but eliminates the tumor from where the margin of healthy lung surrounds it.
Radiotherapy is the use of high-energy x-rays or other particles to kill cancer cells. Moreover, the most commonly used type radiation therapy is called external-beam radiation therapy, which is radiation given from a machine outside the body. Furthermore, doctors usually apply radiation therapy over a set period and do it with a specific number of treatments. However, it does not work effectively on widespread cancer.
Chemotherapy work by administering potent drugs to destroy cancerous cells. It stops the ability of the cancer cells to grow and divide rapidly. Doctors also advise patients to take the drug over a long period of time.
Targeted therapy is one of the cancer treatment options where the treatment administered targets cancer’s specific proteins, genes or the tissue environment that is the major contributor to the growth of cancer. This treatment option is applied in different ways, namely: (3)
- Anti-angiogenesis therapy: Firstly, this aims at stopping the process of making new blood cells a process known as angiogenesis.
- Administering of Epidermal growth factor receptor (EFGR) inhibitors: Meanwhile, this may be useful for stopping the growth of lung cancer.
This is a therapy that can boost the body’s natural defense mechanism to fight against cancer. Staging can also treat Non-small cell cancer. This includes stage I to stage IV which is the metastatic stage. Most cancer treatment options are effective for each stage. Lastly, doctors use some treatments together for cases where the cancer has advanced.