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Editorials |

In Search of the Holy Grail : Lung Cancer Biomarkers

Douglas Arenberg, MD, FCCP
Author and Funding Information

Affiliations: Ann Arbor, MI
 ,  Dr. Arenberg is Associate Professor of Medicine, University of Michigan Medical School.

Correspondence to: Douglas Arenberg, MD, FCCP, Associate Professor of Medicine, University of Michigan Medical School, 6301 MSRB III, 1150 W. Medical Center Dr, Ann Arbor, MI 48109-0642; e-mail: darenber@umich.edu



Chest. 2004;126(2):325-326. doi:10.1378/chest.126.2.325
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A central paradigm in the care of patients with lung cancer is to offer surgery with curative intent (and hopefully outcome) to as many patients as possible while performing as few unnecessary surgeries as possible. “Unnecessary” surgery must be defined first as surgery in patients with advanced stage disease, in whom (at this time) surgery offers no benefit over chemoradiation therapy. Exactly who meets this definition may be in flux, as trials that employ neoadjuvant chemotherapy may change the answer to the question of “who does (or does not) benefit from lung cancer surgery?” In the current setting, patients whose lung cancer is clinical stage IIIa or worse do not gain a significant benefit from surgical resection. The initial evaluation of patients with suspected lung cancer has therefore focused on determining, with the least invasive approach possible, those whose disease is N2 or worse.

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