At the recent 2017 Multidisciplinary Thoracic Cancer Symposium, there were 2 key studies that will benefit our seniors with lung cancer.
The first study showed that early stage lung cancer patients treated with stereotactic body radiotherapy (SBRT), like that delivered by CyberKnife, survived just as long as patients with surgery. SBRT controlled 84.5% of the lung cancers in seniors with stage I lung cancer.
“Definitive lung SBRT in patients 80 years and older appears to be safe and efficacious,” said lead author Dr. Richard Cassidy III of Emory University in Atlanta.
In Dr. Cassidy’s study, the average age was 85 years and 40% had adenocarcinoma of the lung while 29% had squamous cell lung cancer.
The second study reported by Dr. Singh from the Roswell Park Cancer Institute showed that the “one and done” approach with SBRT may be just as good as 3 treatments in 1 week. This means that they only had 1 treatment and no more. Lung cancer patients were selected for the “one and done” SBRT because these patients had small lung cancers at the edge of the lung, minimizing radiation exposure normal lung tissues.
“Our study is the first to show that 1 fraction of SBRT, a one and done treatment approach, is as good as 3 fractions for early stage lung cancers in terms of survival and toxicity,” said Dr. Singh. This means the patient only needs to have one 30 minute radiation therapy treatment before they get back to the important things in their life.
The one and done study was a so-called phase II trial so we will need to await the results from the gold standard phase III trial in the future.
The CyberKnife Advantage
CyberKnife is the only SBRT machine out there that continuously tracks your lung cancer while you breath-sparing more normal lung tissue. There’s no incision, no pain, and no hospital stay.
If you have any questions about your early stage lung cancer, please feel free to call me, Dr. Edward Hughes, at 855-Dayton 1. I guarantee that I will see you in consultation within 1-3 days of your phone call.