Skip to content

Lung Cancer Health Center

Font Size

Treatment Option Overview

    continued...

    Tyrosine kinase inhibitors are targeted therapy drugs that block signals needed for tumors to grow. Tyrosine kinase inhibitors may be used with other anticancer drugs as adjuvant therapy.

    Tyrosine kinase inhibitors used to treat non-small cell lung cancer include erlotinib and gefitinib. They are types of epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR) tyrosine kinase inhibitors. Crizotinib is a type of tyrosine kinase inhibitor that is used to treat non-small cell lung cancer with certain gene changes.

    See Drugs Approved for Non-Small Cell Lung Cancer for more information.

    Laser therapy

    Laser therapy is a cancer treatment that uses a laser beam (a narrow beam of intense light) to kill cancer cells.

    Photodynamic therapy (PDT)

    Photodynamic therapy (PDT) is a cancer treatment that uses a drug and a certain type of laser light to kill cancer cells. A drug that is not active until it is exposed to light is injected into a vein. The drug collects more in cancer cells than in normal cells. Fiberoptic tubes are then used to carry the laser light to the cancer cells, where the drug becomes active and kills the cells. Photodynamic therapy causes little damage to healthy tissue. It is used mainly to treat tumors on or just under the skin or in the lining of internal organs. When the tumor is in the airways, PDT is given directly to the tumor through an endoscope.

    Cryosurgery

    Cryosurgery is a treatment that uses an instrument to freeze and destroy abnormal tissue, such as carcinoma in situ. This type of treatment is also called cryotherapy. For tumors in the airways, cryosurgery is done through an endoscope.

    Electrocautery

    Electrocautery is a treatment that uses a probe or needle heated by an electric current to destroy abnormal tissue. For tumors in the airways, electrocautery is done through an endoscope.

    Watchful waiting

    Watchful waiting is closely monitoring a patient's condition without giving any treatment until symptoms appear or change. This may be done in certain rare cases of non-small cell lung cancer.

    New types of treatment are being tested in clinical trials.

    1|2|3|4

    Today on WebMD

    Broken cigarette
    Do you know the myths from the facts?
    man with a doctor
    Our health check will steer you in the right direction.
     
    sauteed cherry tomatoes
    Fight cancer one plate at a time.
    Lung cancer xray
    See it in pictures, plus read the facts.
     
    15 Cancer Symptoms Men Ignore
    FEATURE
    Lung Cancer Risks Myths and Facts
    SLIDESHOW
     
    cancer fighting foods
    SLIDESHOW
    Improving Lung Cancer Survival Targeted Therapy
    VIDEO
     
    Lung Cancer Surprising Differences Between Sexes
    VIDEO
    Pets Improve Your Health
    SLIDESHOW
     
    Vitamin D
    SLIDESHOW
    Lung Cancer Surgery Options
    VIDEO
     

    WebMD Special Sections