Lung Cancer Ablation
Dr. Charles Peebles
Dr Charles Peebles (Southampton) has a special interest in both cryoablation and microwave ablation of lung tumours.
Lung Tumour- Microwave or Cryoablation
Benefits of cancer ablation
- Less invasive than "keyhole"
- Shorter hospital stay
- Return to work quicker
- Preserves normal tissue better than surgical techniques
Lung cancer can be primary (originating from the lung) or secondary (originating from another organ eg. colon, breast, skin, etc). Where appropriate lung tumours are usually surgically resected. If the tumour is small and peripheral, ablation may be the treatment of choice. Similarly if the tumour is awkwardly located or traditional surgery thought to be too great an undertaking for the patient ablation may also be considered. Each case is taken on its own individual merit. Lung ablation is undertaken following agreement with all the doctors involved in your care.
How do I proceed?
Referrals for Lung ablation are better coming directly from your oncologist or cancer care team. Patients with cancer in other organs or patients with effusions are unlikely to be suitable as systemic therapy is the appropriate treatment. If in doubt contact your oncologist.
The decision to ablate depends very much on the exact site and nature of your disease. Decisions to ablate or operate are taken by the cancer team, not by individuals. It is also dependant on your overall health as ablation is a hospital procedure that requires either general anaesthesia or deep sedation.
Image-guided microwave ablation or cryoablation are carried out under general anaesthetic not because it is painful but to aid with precision targeting of the tumour. Most patients will experience some coughing and chest discomfort after the procedure. Pneumothorax necessitating chest drain insertion before you wake up is fairly common and may extend your hospital stay by 24 hours. Despite this, most patients are able to go home the next day. A follow-up is performed at about two weeks later to confirm the treatment is successful and complete.
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