Medicines for lung cancer mainly involve Reference chemotherapy Opens New Window. Other medicines may be used to help with pain.
Chemotherapy is the most effective treatment for small cell lung cancer. It can help control the growth and spread of the cancer, but it cures lung cancer in only a small number of people. It also may be used to treat more advanced stages of non-small cell lung cancer.
Chemotherapy is called a systemic treatment because the medicines enter your bloodstream, travel through your body, and kill cancer cells both inside and outside the lung area. Some chemotherapy drugs are taken by mouth (orally), while others are injected into a vein (intravenous, or IV).
Some of the more common chemotherapy medicines used for lung cancer include the following:
- Reference Bevacizumab
- Reference Carboplatin
- Reference Cisplatin
- Reference Crizotinib
- Reference Docetaxel
- Reference Erlotinib
- Reference Etoposide
- Reference Gemcitabine
- Reference Irinotecan
- Reference Paclitaxel
- Reference Pemetrexed
- Reference Vinorelbine
You may be concerned about Reference losing your hair from cancer treatment. Not all chemotherapy medicines cause hair loss, and some people have only mild thinning that is noticeable only to them. Talk to your doctor about whether hair loss is an expected side effect of the medicines you will receive.
Chemotherapy may be combined with surgery. It may be given before or after surgery to kill cancer cells.
Medicines for pain
Pain is one of the main concerns of people who have cancer. But cancer pain can almost always be controlled with Reference Reference medicines and other options. Medicines used for cancer pain include prescribed medicines, such as Reference hydrocodone or morphine, or nonprescription medicines, such as aspirin and Reference similar drugs Opens New Window.
|By:||Reference Healthwise Staff||Last Revised: Reference October 22, 2012|
|Medical Review:||Reference E. Gregory Thompson, MD - Internal Medicine
Reference Michael Seth Rabin, MD - Medical Oncology