Approximately two-thirds of patients have progressed to stage III or stage IV by the time they are diagnosed with lung cancer. This is often due to the absence of symptoms during the early stages of the disease. While surgery for stage 3 and stage 4 lung cancer is usually not recommended, it may be effective in very specific situations.
At West Coast Thoracic Surgery, our experienced thoracic surgeons Ali Mahtabifard, MD and Clark Fuller, MD have combined over 25 years of experience in the advanced surgical treatment of lung cancer. Our surgeons are highly regarded as experts in the use of cutting-edge minimally invasive surgical techniques and have been able to successfully treat patients deemed “inoperable” by other health facilities.
To learn more about our treatment approach to lung cancer or to schedule your initial consultation with a Los Angeles thoracic surgeon, please call 310.854.0909.
Surgical Treatment Options
Surgical resection may be an option for patients with very limited stage IIIA lung cancer. During this stage of the disease, the cancer has spread to nearby lymph nodes but has remained localized to one side of the body. Before surgery, chemotherapy and radiation are typically used first to help control the disease. If the patient responds well to this therapy, our surgeons can then plan the appropriate surgical resection. Depending on the location and extent of the tumor progression, our surgeons may perform a lobectomy (removal of one lobe of the lung) or a pneumonectomy (removal of an entire lung), along with dissection and removal of the lymph nodes. After surgical resection, adjuvant chemotherapy and radiation may or may not be used, depending on the patient.
Treatments Options for Inoperable Stage 3/4 Lung Cancer
Patients diagnosed with stage IV lung cancer, as well as patients diagnosed with inoperable stage III lung cancer, are eligible to receive a variety of chemotherapy and combined chemotherapy/radiation options. While not curable, lung cancer at these stages is treatable, and continued advances have been made over the years to improve patient specificity and efficacy of chemotherapy drugs. Targeted radiation therapy is particularly useful for relieving symptoms associated with metastatic disease to improve quality of life. Patients with inoperable stage 3 and stage 4 lung cancer are referred to highly experienced radiation oncologists who can develop appropriate, individualized treatment plans.
Contact a Los Angeles Thoracic Surgeon
West Coast Thoracic Surgery is a Los Angeles-based practice dedicated to the comprehensive treatment of lung cancer and other conditions within the chest cavity. Our renowned thoracic surgeons, Ali Mahtabifard, MD and Clark Fuller, MD, have trained at some of the country’s most prestigious cancer institutions and are highly knowledgable and skilled in the most advanced minimally invasive thoracic surgical techniques for the treatment of lung cancer.
To learn more about the lung cancer treatment, or to schedule your initial consultation with a Los Angeles thoracic surgeon, please call 310.854.0909 or fill out our online contact form.
Next, read about diseases of the esophagus.