Dr. Kris on the Challenges of Treating Lung Cancer
Mark G. Kris, MD, William and Joy Ruane Chair in Thoracic Oncology, Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center, discusses some of the challenges of treating patients with lung cancer.
There are not enough curative therapies in the field of lung cancer, Kris says. Patients with localized disease are cured with surgery and patients with locally regionally spread disease are cured with radiation and chemotherapy simultaneously. However, Kris says, these patients often develop metastatic spread and recurrence. Kris says the biggest challenge is to prevent metastases in these patients.
About two-thirds of patients already have metastatic cancer when they are diagnosed, Kris says, but there is not a curative strategy for these patients. Physicians are working on improving the quality of life for these patients. Hopefully, advances that have been made in stage 4 lung cancer can be moved up to stage 3, Kris says, which could help to cure more patients.