NCCN Guidelines for Patients® | Lung Cancer - Non-Small Cell Lung Cancer
43 NCCN Guidelines for Patients ® : Lung Cancer – Non-Small Cell, 2018 Side effects Side effects are unhealthy or unpleasant physical or emotional responses to treatment. You may experience side effects from the anesthesia or surgery. General anesthesia may cause a sore throat from the breathing tube, nausea with vomiting, confusion, muscle aches, and itching. Common side effects of any surgery are pain, swelling, and scars. Pain can be intense after lung surgery. Pain and swelling often fade away in the weeks after surgery. Numbness near the surgical area may be long-lasting. There is a chance of infection, which may cause pneumonia. There’s also a chance of a collapsed lung (pneumothorax). Not all side effects of surgery are listed here. Please ask your treatment team for a complete list of common and rare side effects. If a side effect bothers you, tell your treatment team. There may be ways to help you feel better. Ablation Ablation destroys small tumors with little harm to nearby tissue. It isn’t used often for lung cancer. It may be used for small tumors. Radiofrequency ablation kills cancer cells using heat from electrodes that are passed through a bronchoscope. This treatment is done by an interventional radiologist. Radiation therapy Radiation therapy most often uses high-energy x-rays to treat lung cancer. The x-rays damage DNA in cancer cells. This either kills the cancer cells or stops new cancer cells from being made. Radiation therapy may be used for all stages of lung cancer. In some cases, it may be used to treat the cancer. In other cases, it is used to reduce symptoms. It may be used alone or with other types of cancer treatment. Read Parts 6 or 7 to learn when and which types of radiation therapy are an option. 5 Overview of cancer treatments Ablation | Radiation therapy Supportive care Supportive care doesn’t aim to treat cancer but aims to improve quality of life. It is also called palliative care. It can address many needs. One example is treatment for physical and emotional symptoms. Supportive care can also help with treatment decisions as you may have more than one option. It can also help with coordination of care between health providers. Talk with your treatment team to plan the best supportive care for you.