Advanced or metastatic small cell lung cancer treatment
The standard therapy for patients with advanced (or metastatic) small cell lung cancer is a combination chemotherapy treatment based on two drugs. These include a platinum salt (cisplatin or carboplatin chosen by the doctor based on the patient’s conditions) and etoposide.
Both drugs are administered intravenously. Cycles are repeated every 3 weeks. On the first day of each cycle, both platinum (cisplatin/carboplatin) and etoposide are administered. Etoposide is then administered for the following 2 days. The patient receives up to a maximum of 4-6 cycles of chemotherapy, depending on the benefit and side effects.
How is the effectiveness of chemotherapy evaluated?
The treatment’s efficiency is evaluated after the first 2-3 cycles, with a chest-abdomen CT with contrast. This is compared to the CT scan performed prior to starting chemotherapy.
Once the 4-6 cycles have been completed, the patient enters a follow-up phase, which consists of a CT scan every 3 months for restaging.