Category Archives: Metastatic Cancers

REAL HOPE FOR STAGE 4 LUNG CANCER

When every extra day counts, turn to the CyberKnife.

When Just Doing the Same Thing Doesn’t Work

The outlook for someone with stage 4 non-small cell lung cancer with only a few metastases is not promising.  After the upfront chemotherapy, the treatment options have been limited to “maintenance” chemotherapy that does not provide a great quality of life.  “Maintenance chemo” is continuing with the same regimen that was prescribed for the original lung cancer and the few metastatic sites.  Many studies have shown that most cancers come back at the site of the original lung cancer and the original metastatic sites, and not new sites.  So why not focus on those areas instead of just giving more chemotherapy?

Look For Better Answers

Dr. Daniel Gomez and colleagues set out to determine if there is a better treatment for Stage 4 non-small cell lung cancer patients who have 1-3 new areas of cancer spread. He spearheaded a clinical trial that randomly assigned patients to A) “maintenance” chemotherapy B) local therapy like radiation or surgery to those metastatic spots or C) no treatment at all.

Patients who had standard chemotherapy and were in relatively good shape after chemotherapy treatment were eligible for the clinical trial. Many medical oncologists (chemo doctors) were reluctant to let their patients in the trial due to their belief that more chemo must be better than anything else. But, they soon learned that more chemo is not better for survival or for quality of life.

A Breakthrough Result  

Although only 74 lung cancer patients were entered into the clinical trial from 2012 to 2016, a real revolutionary result was seen.

Group A (more maintenance chemo) = 4 month survival

Group B (local radiation or surgery) = 12 month survival

Group C (no additional treatment) = 4 month survival

The clinical trial was closed early because the doctors learned very quickly that treating the metastatic spots was so much more effective than continuing with the same chemotherapy. These doctors switched their patients protocols immediately. 

What Does This Mean for You 

Radiation therapy to these new metastatic spots can be done very quickly and painlessly. Treatment with the CyberKnife is the perfect option to beat your non-small cell lung cancer without surgery.  No pain and no incisions. And it allows you more time for the important things in your life. CyberKnife is real hope for another year of symptom free survival.

If you have any questions about your lung cancer, please feel free to call me, Dr. Edward Hughes at 855-Dayton 1.

I guarantee that I will see you within 1-3 days of your phone call for a consultation.

Cyber Knife for Metastatic Cancer offers Real Hope

It’s been over 20 years since Dr. Sam Hellman and Dr. Ralph Weichselbaum, two radiation oncologists from Harvard University and then the University of Chicago, proposed the concept of “oligo metastasis” (J Clin Oncol 13; pp 8-10, 1995).  “Oligo” is derived from the Greek meaning “few.” 

The revolutionary concept that Drs. Hellman and Weichselbaum proposed was a stepwise growth of cancer that occurs with an intermediate state of a few or “oligo” metastases before becoming more widespread.  In 1995, “oligo metastasis” was just that idea.  With the breakthrough technology that is stereotactic radiosurgery, like that delivered by Cyber Knife, there is now have real hope in treating patients with “oligo metastasis” with few harmful side effects. 

In a landmark study, Dr. Ost and coworkers from Europe, reported on 119 men with recurrent prostate cancer in 3 sites or fewer who were treated with stereotactic radiosurgery, like that delivered by Cyber Knife.  96% of the metastasis were in bone or lymph nodes.  The results were dramatic with 90% of the “oligo metastases” controlled by stereotactic radiosurgery at the 5 year mark- very long-term cancer control.  Radiosurgery also delayed the start of hormonal therapy for over 2 years.  And 39% of these men were free from the development of other sites of distant metastasis. 

Importantly, the senior author and leader of the European group, Dr. De Meerleer also reported spectacular results with radiosurgery, like that delivered by Cyber Knife, for patients with metastatic kidney cancer, a cancer previously described as “radioresistant” (Lancet Oncology 15; pp 170-177, 2014).  An incredible finding for patients with metastatic kidney cancer, a result in 1 of 7 cases, was the disappearance of other metastases that were far away from the metastasis treated by stereotactic radiosurgery.  Dr. DeMeerleer believes that Cyber Knife generated a potent immunologic reaction that is widespread. 

With Cyber Knife, there is now real hope for patients with oligo metastases from a number of different cancers, like prostate, kidney, lung and breast.

For more information about Cyber Knife for oligo metastasis, please feel free to call me, Dr. Edward Hughes, at 855-Dayton1.