Dr. Cerfolio on the Role of Surgery in Lung Cancer

Robert J. Cerfolio, MD
Published: Monday, Feb 25, 2019



Robert J. Cerfolio, MD, director of the Lung Cancer Center, chief of clinical thoracic surgery, NYU Langone’s Perlmutter Cancer Center, discusses the role of surgery in lung cancer.

Despite therapeutic advances, surgery has retained its role in the treatment of patients with lung cancer, explains Cerfolio. However, the rate of benign resection has decreased tremendously. Now, the benign resection rate is approximately 5%, whereas it used to range from about 10% to 12%. If anything, surgeons are able to be more selective with surgery because they are now able to more effectively diagnose a patient’s condition in a more minimally invasively way.

However, physicians have just scratched the surface in their understanding of how cancer works, adds Cerfolio. Every day physicians are finding different receptors on cancer cells and other cells and shields. For example, physicians know that PD-L1 protects normal cells and also is on cancer cells. As more research is done, physicians are learning more about how it can get into these cells. With regard to surgery, minimally invasive techniques are going to change practice. It is only a matter of time before surgeons are going to go down through the mouth or the nose to treat lung cancer, concludes Cerfolio.
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Robert J. Cerfolio, MD, director of the Lung Cancer Center, chief of clinical thoracic surgery, NYU Langone’s Perlmutter Cancer Center, discusses the role of surgery in lung cancer.

Despite therapeutic advances, surgery has retained its role in the treatment of patients with lung cancer, explains Cerfolio. However, the rate of benign resection has decreased tremendously. Now, the benign resection rate is approximately 5%, whereas it used to range from about 10% to 12%. If anything, surgeons are able to be more selective with surgery because they are now able to more effectively diagnose a patient’s condition in a more minimally invasively way.

However, physicians have just scratched the surface in their understanding of how cancer works, adds Cerfolio. Every day physicians are finding different receptors on cancer cells and other cells and shields. For example, physicians know that PD-L1 protects normal cells and also is on cancer cells. As more research is done, physicians are learning more about how it can get into these cells. With regard to surgery, minimally invasive techniques are going to change practice. It is only a matter of time before surgeons are going to go down through the mouth or the nose to treat lung cancer, concludes Cerfolio.



View Conference Coverage
Online CME Activities
TitleExpiration DateCME Credits
Year in Review™: Reflecting on Recent Evidence With an Eye to the Future of Lung Cancer ManagementMar 30, 20191.5
Online Medical Crossfire®: 5th Annual Miami Lung Cancer ConferenceMay 30, 20196.5
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