[toc]The choices of treatment for lung cancer include surgery, radiotherapy, chemotherapy, lobectomy and palliative care, either individually or in combination. It depends on the state of cancer, cancer cell type and how much it has spread and the person’s health.
It is therefore very important to make all essential diagnostic tests in order to determine the severity of cancer. It is imperative that the patient mulls over all the probable options. Other factors to consider are the potential side effects of treatment, chances of curing the ailment and prolonging life. This article will discuss these common treatments for lung cancer.
Various Treatments For Lung Cancer
If diagnostic examinations confirm the existence of lung cancer, a lung scan can determine if the disease is localized and if the spread is such that it can be cured with surgery.
The patient is also expected to undergo blood and pulmonary tests to determine whether the operation is going to be risk-free and if his or her lung tissues are going to be healthy enough after surgery. If your examiner discovers a poor respiratory reserve which is usually the case with chain-smokers, surgery may not be recommended.
The radiation therapy employs the use of X-rays of high energy to terminate cancer cells present in the lungs. In external radiation therapy, radiation is generated outside the body by means of a linear accelerator and concentrated on the cancerous growth in the lungs.
Such radiation therapy is employed most often for the treatment of primary lung cancer or its metastases in nearby organs. Radiation therapy may also be used post-surgery to destroy the remaining cancer cells that cannot be killed during surgery.
Lobectomy is the amputation of a lung lobe. It requires the administration of common anesthesia and a surgical incision inside the chest area, also known as a thoracotomy. In lung cancer patients with respiratory problems, lobectomy is the ideal approach as it reduces the possibility of localized reappearance.
If the patient’s lung function is low, a wedge resection is recommended. Since the surgeon is going to the slit through the rib region to get at the lungs, the patient’s ribs will pain for a few days after surgery. All strenuous activities are to be restricted for a couple of months.
Chemotherapy involves the use of antineoplastic medicines intravenously or orally to avert the progression of cancerous cells. These medicines enter the blood circulation and reach every area of the patient’s body. This makes this treatment very effective for those malignances that have already spread or metastasized in other organs near the lungs.
Administration of these drugs is subject to the type as well as the state of cancer in the lungs. Chemotherapy is generally administered either as a primary cure or as an additional therapy with surgery or radiotherapy.
It is a common mistake to confuse palliative care with hospice care. But they are not the same. Cancer patients undergo a lot of physical discomfort as well as emotional trauma while their treatment is going on. Often it reaches a critical stage and requires professional medical assistance.
Palliative care professionals provide relief to the patients who are experiencing pain, dizziness, appetite loss and sleeping disorders. These teams work with the doctor in charge to ensure that the patient is well taken care of during this difficult phase.
Lung cancer is quite a serious problem. If you or your loved one is suffering from lung cancer, take a good deal of time to weigh your options for the treatment.