Dr. Molena on Lung-Sparing Surgery in Early-Stage Lung Cancer

Partner | Cancer Centers | <b>Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center </b>

Daniela Molena, MD, director, Esophageal Surgery Program, Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center, discusses the use of lung-sparing surgery in early-stage lung cancer.

Daniela Molena, MD, director, Esophageal Surgery Program, Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center, discusses the use of lung-sparing surgery in early-stage lung cancer.

The future of surgery will move toward less morbid and more lung-sparing approaches, says Molena. As in breast cancer, expansive surgeries and resections were done until data demonstrated that a smaller resection could result in equivalent survival outcomes, explains Molena.

With smaller surgeries, quality of life has improved dramatically, says Molena. Minimally invasive approaches are important because only so much lung can be resected before it starts to adversely affect the patient’s functionality. As such, the field is going to see more sublobar resections or white-light resections, when appropriate.

As the field moves in that direction, surgeons are going to become more reliant on technology to identify which patients are candidates for these approaches versus lobectomy. Such technology will also enable better assessments of the lymphatic drainage, the lymph node, and the original disease in patients, concludes Molena.