November 1st 2005
Lung cancer continues to be themost common cause of cancerdeaths in the United States forboth men and women. Unfortunately,the majority of patients presentwith local or distant disease at thetime of diagnosis. Surgical resectioncontinues to offer the best chance forlong-term survival; however, less than25% of patients have surgically resectabledisease. Even after surgicalresection for early-stage disease a significantnumber of patients will developrecurrent disease, with themajority being distant in nature. Developmentof distant disease usuallyproves to be the terminal event inmost patients. Multiple treatmentmodalities have been investigated asadjuvant therapy to decrease the incidenceof distant disease after completesurgical resection. Untilrecently, no modality has shown asurvival advantage in patients afterresection for non–small-cell lung cancer(NSCLC).