Adjuvant (Protective) Chemotherapy in Lung Cancer

80 percent of lung cancer is small extracellular lung cancer (NSCLC) and 20 percent is small cell lung cancer (SCLC). The main treatment in early stage NSCLC is surgery. Although early stage, in the first 2 years after surgery, local and / or distant recurrences can be seen in more than half of the patients. Adjuvant (preventive) chemotherapy is recommended to prevent or delay these relapses and to eliminate micrometastases.

Adjuvant chemotherapy needs are determined according to the stages. Adjuvant chemotherapy is known to improve survival in post-operative stage II-IIIA NSCLC. However, adjuvant chemotherapy has no survival benefit in stage IA NSCLC. For Stage IB NSCLC, the results are contradictory. However, it is thought that adjuvant chemotherapy may be useful in high-risk cases.

Target-directed molecules have been tried in adjuvant treatment of NSCLC but the survival benefit has not been demonstrated. Adjuvant chemotherapy in NSCLC contains platinum group drug and is given as 4 cycles. Small cell lung cancer (SCLC) is graded differently from NSCLC. It is divided into two classes as limited or diffuse stage and only 20 percent of patients at the time of diagnosis are limited. There is no place for surgery even in limited stage. In the limited phase, the disease is treated with chemoradiotherapy.

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