News | Coronavirus (COVID-19) | May 18, 2020

Treatment Guidance for Lung Cancer Patients During COVID-19

In a new study to help oncologists address the challenges COVID-19-positive lung cancer patients present, a team of global lung cancer specialists published a review of lung cancer treatments for patients with COVID-19

In a new study to help oncologists address the challenges COVID-19-positive lung cancer patients present, a team of global lung cancer specialists published a review of lung cancer treatments for patients with COVID-19

Getty Images

May 18, 2020 — Lung cancer patients are at heightened risk for COVID-19 and the reported high mortality rate among lung cancer patients with COVID-19 has given pause to oncologists who are faced with patients with not one, but two severe, life-threatening diseases.

To help oncologists address the many challenges COVID-19-positive lung cancer patients present, a team of global lung cancer specialists this week published a review of lung cancer treatments for patients with COVID-19 in the current issue of the Journal of Thoracic Oncology, the official journal of the International Association for the Study of Lung Cancer (IASLC).

"The purpose of this manuscript is to present a practical multidisciplinary and international overview to assist in treatment for lung cancer patients during this pandemic, with the caveat that evidence is lacking in many areas," said lead author Chandra Belani, M.D., chief science officer for the IASLC, Professor of Medicine and Oncology at the Penn State College of Medicine and Penn State Cancer Institute.

As a group, lung cancer patients tend to be older and have an increased risk of relative immunosuppression from the underlying malignancy and from anti-cancer treatments. Furthermore, patients with lung cancer may have additional comorbidities, including a history of smoking and pre-existing lung disease.

"A major consideration in the delivery of cancer care during the pandemic is to balance the risk of patient exposure and infection with the need to provide effective cancer treatment," Belani wrote.

The rapid onset of the COVID-19 infection requires careful consideration of urgent decisions to treat lung cancer. Treatment decisions balancing the risk of exposure with effective care require close multidisciplinary discussions and thorough deliberation between caregivers and patients. The duration and severity of the COVID-19 pandemic are unclear, and treatment delay alone will be insufficient to provide optimal treatment to cancer patients.

"In combination with determining a treatment path for lung cancer, physicians should educate patients to help them prevent further spread of COVID-19 according to WHO and CDC guidelines," Belani urged colleagues.

COVID-19 complicates cancer care further by forcing patients into self-isolation to protect themselves, other patients, providers, and family members.

"Self-isolation goes against best practices for treating cancer patients, which often calls for joining support groups, reaching out to loved ones and family members for assistance and remaining active," Belani said. "The decision regarding immediate vs. delayed treatment during the COVID-19 pandemic should balance the delay of treatment in the presence of existing co-morbidities vs. the possible harm from COVID-19."

Belani and his co-authors include advice to clinicians that intersects with virtually all lung cancer patients, including those with early-stage lung cancer, locally advanced lung cancer, COVID-19 and immunotherapy, advanced stage non-small cell lung cancer and small cell lung cancer.

For more information: www.iaslc.org/

Related Coronavirus Content:

VIDEO: Imaging COVID-19 With Point-of-Care Ultrasound (POCUS)

The Cardiac Implications of Novel Coronavirus

CT Provides Best Diagnosis for Novel Coronavirus (COVID-19)

Radiology Lessons for Coronavirus From the SARS and MERS Epidemics

Deployment of Health IT in China’s Fight Against the COVID-19 Epidemic

Emerging Technologies Proving Value in Chinese Coronavirus Fight

Radiologists Describe Coronavirus CT Imaging Features

Coronavirus Update from the FDA

CT Imaging of the 2019 Novel Coronavirus (2019-nCoV) Pneumonia

CT Imaging Features of 2019 Novel Coronavirus (2019-nCoV)

Chest CT Findings of Patients Infected With Novel Coronavirus 2019-nCoV Pneumonia 

Find more related clinical content Coronavirus (COVID-19)

ACC COVID-19 recommendations for the cardiovascular care team

VIDEO: What Cardiologists Need to Know about COVID-19 — Interview with Thomas Maddox, M.D.

The Cardiac Implications of Novel Coronavirus

ESC Council on Hypertension Says ACE-I and ARBs Do Not Increase COVID-19 Mortality

Related Content

Important milestone demonstrates the unrivalled experience, technological innovation and global market leadership of IBA and its clinical partners
News | Proton Therapy | September 25, 2020
September 25, 2020 — IBA (Ion Beam Applications SA) announced that more than 100,000 patients have now been treated w
Lung and respiratory health pioneer paves way for more precise care of complex respiratory conditions
News | Artificial Intelligence | September 25, 2020
September 25, 2020 — VIDA Diagnostics, Inc. announced that it has received 510(k) clearance from the Food and Drug Ad
RADLogics AI-Powered solution in use: chest X-ray of COVID-19 positive case with heatmap key image.

RADLogics AI-Powered solution in use: chest X-ray of COVID-19 positive case with heatmap key image.

News | Artificial Intelligence | September 23, 2020
September 23, 2020 — RADLogics
New research from King's College London has found that COVID-19 may be diagnosed on the same emergency scans intended to diagnose stroke.

Canon Medical Systems

News | Cardiac Imaging | September 22, 2020
September 22, 2020 — New research from King's College London has
Philips Azurion Lung Edition supports high precision diagnosis and minimally invasive therapy in one room
News | Lung Imaging | September 21, 2020
September 21, 2020 — Philips introduced...
Final rule includes mandatory participation for nearly 1,000 practices and does not allow sufficient time for transition

Getty Images

News | Radiation Oncology | September 21, 2020
September 21, 2020 — In response to the September 18 ...
According to a new report published by P&S Intelligence, the global radiotherapy market is expected to expand from $7.2M in 2019 to $17M by 2030.

Image courtesy of Accuray

Feature | Radiation Therapy | September 21, 2020 | By Melinda Taschetta-Millane
According to a...
Breast cancer patients whose disease has spread to their brains fare better if their metastases are picked up before they begin to cause symptoms, according to a study presented at the 12th European Breast Cancer Conference.

Getty Images

News | Breast Imaging | September 21, 2020
September 21, 2020 — Breast cancer patients whose disease has spread to their brains fare better if their metastases
The COVID-19 pandemic has impacted every facet of personal life, business operations and healthcare, including breast imaging and breast cancer care.

Getty Images

Feature | Breast Imaging | September 18, 2020 | By Susan Harvey, M.D.
The COVID-19 pandemic has impacted every facet o