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Non-Small-Cell Lung Cancer (cont.)

Non–Small-Cell Lung Cancer Treatment

Tissue diagnosis is mandatory prior to any treatment. The goals of treatment are to remove or shrink the tumor, to kill all residual tumor cells, to prevent or minimize complications and paraneoplastic syndromes, and to relieve the symptoms and side effects associated with the disease and treatment. Available therapies cure only a small number of people with lung cancer. Other people’s tumors shrink substantially or even disappear, although residual cancer cells remain in the body. This is called remission. Most people feel well during remission and are able to resume their everyday activities. Remissions can last a few months, a few years, or even indefinitely. If and when the disease comes back, it is called recurrence or relapse. The disease may recur in the lung or in another part of the body. A loss of weight of more than 5% indicates a poor prognosis.

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