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    Small-Cell Lung Cancer: Treatment by Stage

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    Limited-Stage Small Cell Lung Cancer

    Treatment of limited-stage small cell lung cancer may include the following:

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    Although lung cancer is the leading cause of cancer death in the U.S. in both men and women, both the occurrence of lung cancer and the deaths related to it can be reduced. More than four out of every five cases of lung cancer are associated with cigarette smoking. The cause-and-effect relationship has been extensively documented. During the 1920s, large numbers of men began to smoke cigarettes, presumably in response to increased advertising. Twenty years later, the frequency of lung cancer in men...

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    • Combination chemotherapy and radiation therapy to the chest, with or without radiation therapy to the brain.
    • Combination chemotherapy with or without radiation therapy to the brain in patients with complete response.
    • Combination chemotherapy with or without radiation therapy to the chest.
    • Surgery followed by chemotherapy or chemotherapy plus radiation therapy to the chest, with or without radiation therapy to the brain.
    • Clinical trials of new chemotherapy, surgery, and radiation treatments.

    This summary refers to specific treatments under study in clinical trials, but it may not mention every new treatment being studied. Information about ongoing clinical trials is available from NCI Web site.

    Extensive-Stage Small Cell Lung Cancer

    Treatment of extensive-stage small cell lung cancer may include the following:

    • Chemotherapy.
    • Combination chemotherapy.
    • Combination chemotherapy with or without radiation therapy to the brain for patients with complete response.
    • Radiation therapy to the brain, spine, bone, or other parts of the body where the cancer has spread, as palliative therapy to relieve symptoms and improve quality of life.
    • Clinical trials of new chemotherapy treatments.

    This summary refers to specific treatments under study in clinical trials, but it may not mention every new treatment being studied. Information about ongoing clinical trials is available from the NCI Web site.

    WebMD Public Information from the National Cancer Institute

    Reviewed on August 22, 2006
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