GRACE is pleased to welcome Dr. Rafael Santana-Davila, Assistant Professor with the University of Washington School of Medicine and Seattle Cancer Care Alliance. Dr. Santana-Davila joined GRACE to discuss the basics of lung cancer staging.
For our 13th video in the GRACE Spanish Lung Cancer Library, Brian Hunis, MD joined GRACE to discuss the stages of lung cancer.
General Introduction to Small Cell Lung Cancer
Lung cancer consists of two major types: small cell lung cancer (SCLC) and non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC). Approximately 85% percent of all lung cancer patients have NSCLC, and the remaining 15% have SCLC.
This is the first of the presentations by guest speakers at our NSCLC Patient Education Forum back in September. Dr. Gerard Silvestri is a pulmonologist, a lung disease specialist (not only cancer), and he is also one of the most important leaders in lung cancer within the field of pulmonology, as both a writer of some very important work and as a great speaker.
When oncologists and surgeons talk about staging, we often distinguish between clinical and pathologic staging. Many in the health care field don’t understand or know the difference. Even more, why do we “stage” a cancer (NOT the patient!) at all? These are important questions, because they tell those of us involved in the treatment and care of such patients what is the extent of the disease, what the prognosis might be, and what the treatment plan should entail. That way, the caregivers are all “on the same page".
Over the lasat decade, PET scans have become commonplace in the staging of NSCLC. There's an older post that reviews the concept of PET scans in providing metabolic imaging, as well as a podcast that provides a more complete discussion of PET scanning in oncology, with a focus on lung cancer.