Lung cancer is the most common cause of death from cancer in the U.S. When possible lung cancers are removed by surgery, and depending on the findings, radiation therapy for 6 or 7 weeks in conjunction with chemotherapy, may be required. Some patients have medical problems, particularly lung or heart problems which prevent them from having surgery. Tomotherapy is an excellent technique for treating such tumors to high dose, while minimizing potential injury to lung or heart tissue which is already compromised.
The use of positron emission topography or PET scanning in lung cancer has also allowed us to identify cancer which has spread to other parts of the chest or lymph nodes. Tomotherapy allows us to treat such tumors and the sites of spread to high dose, while still minimizing potential injury to lung or heart tissue. Since every Tomotherapy treatment is preceded by a CT scan, the possibility of the treatment missing the targeted tumor because of chest movement during breathing is significantly reduced as well.