Lung cancer is the leading cause of cancer deaths in the United States, as well as a huge problem globally. Therefore, research efforts for early and late stage lung cancer are focused on developing treatments that can improve survival rates. Surgery remains the main option for treating stages I & II lung cancer. For stage III lung cancer and situations in which the patient is unable to be operated on, the disease is being treated with stereotactic radiation. This form of treatment functions similar to surgery, as it delivers a concentrated dose of radiation to the targeted area to eliminate the cancerous tumor.
For stage IV lung cancer, chemotherapy is the standard of care for a majority of the cases. Yet, immunotherapy is another treatment option for patients, which involves an infusion that stimulates immune cells to fight cancer. In addition, new target agents have been developed to treat lung cancer patients who have markers for certain gene mutations, and have shown very successful outcomes. As more and more gene mutations are found to be linked to lung cancer, research efforts have been poured into developing more target agents to treat the particular mutations.
New immunotherapies, focused on using antibodies to stop cancer cells from growing, also offer promise for treating advanced lung cancer.
Cone Health takes a multidisciplinary approach to treating lung cancer and provides each patient with individualized care. Cone Health Cancer Center assembles their team of surgeons, radiologists, medical oncologists, pathologists, pharmacists, radiation oncologists and other related healthcare professionals to meet in a council each week to develop a treatment plan for each lung cancer patient.
Cone Health Cancer Center is actively involved in clinical trials that test and research new treatment advancements in lung cancer. Those who are given a lung cancer diagnosis should ask their doctor about active clinical trials being conducted at their treatment center.
Dr. Mohamed K. Mohamed is an oncology and hematology specialist at Cone Health Cancer Center and the Director of the Thoracic Oncology program, Cone Health Cancer Centers. Dr. Mohamed is a 1984 medical school graduate of Ain Shams University. He completed his residency in internal medicine at Pitt County Memorial Hospital and completed a fellowship in hematology and oncology at University of Pittsburg Medical Center and Cancer Institute.