Mark Kris, MD: We are in an amazing time with our ability to deliver more and better treatments to people with lung cancer. I think we can offer more, but at the same time, our job has gotten harder because we have more drugs, we have more choices between drug classes. And we have other strategies, too, things like treating oligometastases or oligoprogression, combining immune treatments with targeted therapies or chemotherapies, finding out which patients should have surgery for their primary cancers, even in the setting of metastatic disease. So many things that are on the table now.
As an oncologist, to do the best job for our patient, what we need to do is look at all the different treatments we have for them, and at each point in their illness where a decision has to be made, we have to make sure we consider all the options. And some options are not intuitive. Again, doing surgery on a cancer that had spread at the time of discovery is something that would have been considered bad practice, frankly, and now it’s something we think about and we believe really can help people. So there are more choices, and they are better for our patients. They’re living longer without cancer. They’re living longer, period. But it’s a harder job for the oncologist and I think more pressure on us to make sure that we consider every option for that patient each time we have to make a treatment decision.
Transcript Edited for Clarity