Lung Cancer Treatment
After receiving a lung cancer diagnosis, you may wonder about your treatment options. Englewood Health provides the latest, most sophisticated lung cancer treatments available today.
Our board-certified specialists treat all types of non-small cell lung cancer and small cell lung cancer. We design a personalized care plan based on the unique properties of any tumors to ensure your treatment is as successful as possible.
For decades, surgery has been the primary treatment option for lung cancer.
Lung Cancer Surgery Options
Early stage lung cancers are best treated surgically. All of our operations are minimally invasive, using video assisted thoracic surgery or VATS platforms (traditional or robotic).
The benefits of VATS, particularly for robotics, are well documented. Patients have less pain, recover faster, and are able to resume normal activity sooner or receive additional treatments within a few weeks of surgery. Certain procedures are even safe for elderly patients.
This procedure is considered the main treatment for most stage 1 and 2 lung cancers. A surgeon removes the lobe where the tumor is located. Because there are five total lobes in the lungs, most patients can undergo a lobectomy without any serious impact on their exercise tolerance. Nevertheless, extensive pre-operative evaluation is undertaken so as to ensure optimal surgical outcomes.
Sub-lobar Surgery (Segmentectomy or Wedge)
This surgery removes the cancer without taking out an entire lobe. It is only advised for select stage 1 lung cancers (smaller than 2cm and with no evidence of local spread to regional lymph nodes). If patients are elderly, have poor lung function, or have other significant health issues, sub-lobar surgery can still be an effective option. Compared to a lobectomy, recovery is even faster and lung function is generally better preserved.
Radiation Treatment for Lung Cancer
If surgery isn’t an option, your doctor may recommend radiation therapy for lung cancer. Englewood Health was the first health care center in New Jersey offering stereotactic body radiation therapy (SBRT) using the Varian Calypso® Anchored Beacon® lung transponder system. This innovative procedure provides real-time feedback on the location and positioning of any lung tumors during breathing cycles.
Knowing the precise location of tumors helps radiation oncologists pinpoint treatment, minimizing the effects to healthy tissues. We customize your treatment to ensure it is as effective as possible. In addition to using lung transponders, we use 4D computerized tomography (CT) scans and respiratory cycle detection to precisely target lung tumors.
Medical Oncology Treatment for Lung Cancer
For more advanced lung cancers, your doctor may recommend chemotherapy, targeted therapy, immunotherapy, and other non-surgical approaches. These treatments are referred to as systemic therapy. Over the past 10 years, the lung cancer survival rate has improved more than any other solid tumor, (breast, colon, prostate). That success is largely to due to these targeted therapies.
Accurate staging and disease analysis are key to determining the best course of therapy for more advanced lung cancer patients (stages II-IV). That is why each patient diagnosed with lung cancer will be thoroughly evaluated by our entire team.
Nurse navigators will work with all the team members, and schedule CT scans and other tests as needed. As a team, we review all the information at our biweekly meetings and develop a treatment plan.
More treatments are becoming available as research in gene targeted therapies evolves. We offer a variety of treatment options now available for patients with advanced forms of lung cancer:
- Multi-modality therapy: This treatment uses a combination therapies that may include chemotherapy, immunotherapy, radiation, and surgery. This approach is selected for patients with locally advanced lung cancers (stages II-IIIB). Tumors that could not be surgically treated initially, may be dramatically reduced and down staged, so they can be removed. There are several ongoing clinical trials for patients with advanced lung cancer using this approach.
- Targeted therapy: After a molecular analysis of any lung tumors, your oncologist may prescribe targeted therapies. These new medications target and interrupt the function of one or more components of cancer cells. Targeted therapies may be combined with other treatments such as radiation therapy.