NSCLC treatments

When it comes to NSCLC treatments, there are two important things to note. The first is that treatment options depend primarily on the stage of cancer. Secondly, no matter which NSCLC treatments have been tried, individuals have to maintain a healthy lifestyle while receiving their treatment. 

Below are the NSCLC treatments for stages 0 to IIA. 

NSCLC Treatments

Stage 0 

Stage 0 NSCLC (non-small cell lung cancer) is limited and can only be cured by surgery. Both radiation and chemotherapy can be used as NSCLC treatments, but they are not necessary for stage 0 NSCLC. Patients healthy enough to undergo an operation typically get a segmentectomy or wedge resection. The latter is when part of the lobe of the lung is removed. 

Stage 1 

Stage 1 NSCLC treatments are limited, with surgery usually being the only needed treatment. This can be done by either a lobectomy or segmentectomy. If, however, you have cancer that has a high risk of coming back, your doctor may require adjuvant chemotherapy after surgery. 

With that being said, if you are looking for Stage 1 NSCLC treatments but have serious health problems—the kind that stops you from having surgery—then your doctor will likely suggest getting stereotactic body radiation therapy. 

Stage 2

Stage 2 NSCLC treatment typically necessitates surgery, but only if the patient is still healthy enough.  If they are, the cancer is usually removed by either a sleeve resection or lobectomy. That said, sometimes it is needed for the entire lung to be removed. Depending on the stage of cancer, some doctors may suggest chemotherapy before surgery. This will make the tumor smaller and the operation easier. Chemotherapy may also be recommended after surgery. 

Stage IIIA

Stage IIIA NSCLC treatments can be a combination of strategies—specifically, a combination of radiation, chemo, and/or surgery. Usually, there is a team of doctors involved, such as a radiation specialist and an oncologist as planning these NSCLC treatments requires secondary input. 

Treatment usually begins with chemotherapy combined with radiation, and then surgery will follow. If a patient is not strong enough for surgery, more radiation in combination with the chemo will be used. 

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Posted on May 5, 2023