The Many Controversies of Stage IIIA/IIIB Lung Cancer
March 22, 2010
The first issue deserving comment is the heterogeneity of stage III disease. Stage IIIA N2 non–small-cell lung cancer (NSCLC) includes patients with at least one “incidental” N2 node detected at the time of surgical resection in patients who had a negative mediastinal evaluation (including mediastinoscopy) preoperatively. It also includes patients whose initial computed tomography (CT) and positron-emission tomography (PET) scans show multiple bulky (> 2 cm) nodes that are confirmed by either mediastinoscopy or endobronchial ultrasound-guided bronchoscopy.