Lung cancer remains the leading cause of cancer death in the United States. The standard of care for patients with locally advanced non-small-cell lung cancer is radiation plus chemotherapy. The nationally accepted standard radiation prescription dose has remained at 60-63 Gy for more than 30 years, with local failure rates reaching 85% and median survival rates of approximately 17 months. With smaller treatment volumes and the increased conformality of radiation delivery, the administration of higher radiation doses to the target while minimizing dose to critical structures is feasible. Clinical outcome is improved while minimizing toxicity. Recent prospective trials escalating doses to 74 Gy with concurrent chemotherapy have demonstrated promise with improved survival rates and acceptable toxicity rates.
- Conformal radiation therapy
- Dose escalation