Dana Reeve Dies of Lung Cancer
Reeve, 44, Had Never Smoked; Husband Christopher Died in 2004
WebMD News Archive
'Desperate Need' for Early Detection Tests continued...
"We desperately need ways of detecting early lung cancers," Brooks
told WebMD in August.
Nearly 60% of people diagnosed with lung cancer die within one year of their
diagnosis and nearly 75% die within two years. "This has not improved in 10
years," according to the American Cancer Society.
Chest X-rays haven't been shown to be completely beneficial in screening for
early lung cancer, Brooks told WebMD. Brooks was awaiting results of a large
study using CAT scans to take pictures of the lungs.
"The problem with that is you're exposing yourself to radiation from CAT
scans every year and many times you will be finding things on the CAT scans
that are abnormal but are not necessarily cancer, and they require additional
follow-up," Brooks told WebMD after Jennings died of lung cancer.
"It remains to be seen whether or not this will be helpful for the
entire population before we make a statement about this. But it is being
studied, it has been studied, and we're waiting for the results of that study
to be completed ... hopefully within the next couple of years," Brooks
Lung Cancer Treatments
Surgery, chemotherapy, and radiation are three tools doctors use to treat
"Lung cancer is treatable if it's caught early," Brooks told WebMD
in August. "The best treatment for lung cancer is surgery. If it is not
caught early, as it is, unfortunately, in two-thirds of patients, we have made
some progress in terms of the use of chemotherapy ... and radiation."
"There are some exciting new molecular-targeted drugs that are helpful,
and we're understanding the molecular biology of lung cancer much better today
in helping to design more rational treatments," Brooks said. "But
unfortunately, the vast majority of people with lung cancer today will die from