Whether lung cancer is operable or not, may well depend upon the circumstances of the patient involved; however, where certain factors do not allow for this option, other treatments may well be offered. Many factors must be taken into consideration before any treatment or operation can take place, as either may have a prominent bearing on the prognosis of the cancer patient.
Although lung cancer is generally operable, by using either traditional open surgery, or one of the less intrusive and more sophisticated video-assisted thoracoscopic surgeries (VATS), often it may not be considered to be the best option for a patient. Where ill-health is a factor, or either the size and location of the tumor is deemed to be a consideration, other forms of treatment may well have to be considered.
However, other forms of treatment may also depend much on the type of lung cancer that is being treated and it's staging. Be it the more rapid growing Small Cell Lung Cancer (SCLC) that makes up for between 10% - 15% of all diagnosed cases, or the more common and slower growing Non Small Cell Lung Cancer (NSCLC).
The most common of these treatment options offered may include:
1. Chemotherapy tends to be the conventional lung cancer treatment used that everyone has heard of. Today it uses a cocktail of over 100 different drugs and works by destroying the cancerous cells and stopping their spread. However, although considered to be an acceptable treatment, it does tend to cause many unwanted side-effects.
2. External Beam Radiation Therapy (EBRT) which is usually offered when the lung cancer is either considered to be primary, or when it has metastasized (spread to other organs). This form of treatment uses a linear accelerator machine to focus a precise beam of radiation on a given area of the body for a precise period of time to kill off cancerous cells.
Although still widely used throughout the modern...